Becks and Cruise highlight the benefits and the possible perils of co-buying

Since they moved State-side to call Los Angeles their home, the Beckhams have successfully silenced their critics. David earned his recall to the English national team, Victoria has slowly but surely mixed with the great and the good of Hollywood and established herself as a style icon, while even their sons seem to have settled into the American dream.

Perhaps the most surprising thing, however, is that this looks like being no fad, but rather that England’s most famous couple are putting their roots down in LA. Not only have the Beckhams been looking for local schools for their boys, but now it has emerged that David and his new friend Tom Cruise are keen to buy a ‘soccer’ club together.

With his football playing career looking like it is coming to an end at LA Galaxy, the former England captain is believed to see this as a perfect way of staying involved in the game he loves while simultaneously keeping his profile high across the pond.

"David has often spoken of his desire to concentrate on his youth soccer academies, rather than a career in management when he retires from the game," a source close to the player told the Daily Express recently.

"A high-profile soccer venture with a Hollywood superstar would also give him back some of the credibility he surely feels he lost after fleeing prestigious Real Madrid for a megabucks deal in the US."

By going into the venture together, therefore, Cruise and Beckham would not only have a bigger budget but will have a greater reputation with which they will be able to draw in some of the world’s top players.

Would-be homebuyers can look to celebs for money advice

Despite the fact that the vast majority of Hollywood stars are never going to be short on cash, this would not be the first time when several have clubbed together on a business venture.

More than 15 years ago, action movie heroes Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger, as well as Demi Moore, jointly invested in the Planet Hollywood chain of restaurants. From one New York location, the team were able to use their joint capital, expertise and influence to establish what is now one of the most successful theme restaurant chains in the world, with dozens of venues dotted across the globe.

Arguably, for the average Brit, getting onto the housing ladder is just as big of a challenge as buying a football club or restaurant chain is for a rich and famous celebrity.

However, just as with Becks and Sly, going into a venture with others can improve the chances of success, as growing numbers of professionals are cottoning onto.

Indeed, with lenders pulling 100 per cent-plus mortgages off the market, it has never been more appealing for prospective first-time buyers to look into the possibility of ‘joint ownership’, otherwise known as joint equity or co-buying.

According to the latest Roof affordability survey from Shelter, the average first-time property has increased in price from £52,674 to £159,494 over the past ten years alone – an impossibly high price for most people looking to buy on their own.

As Shelter chief executive Adam Sampson commented: "It means there is a generation of young people and young families being locked out of the housing market without a hope of ever sharing in the asset wealth of the generation before."

The primary advantage of co-buying, therefore, is the financial incentive.

With mortgage providers no longer willing to lend four or five times a buyer’s income, but rather limiting themselves to three or 3.5 times a salary, £20,000 won’t go very far.

Buddy up with a couple of friends on a similar salary and suddenly estate agents will sit up and take notice – a combined income of £60,000 is not only enough to get onto the ladder but also allows buyers greater choice over where they live rather than forcing them to set up home in an undesirable location.

A mortgage on several incomes is also likely to be cheaper than each individual paying the rent on a property, while all of the interested parties could potentially benefit from growing equity, dependent upon which way the housing market goes.

What if one buyer wants to say ‘hasta la vista, baby’?

However, there is one obvious drawback to co-buying, namely what if there is clash of personalities or one party wants to move a girlfriend or boyfriend in or even loses their job?

As Arnie showed with the Planet Hollywood deal, sometimes a co-buyer simply wants out of a deal so as to put their money and efforts elsewhere.

As such, the website firstrungnow.com advise that, prior to making any entering into a joint-equity purchase, even if it is with family members of close friends, it is imperative to draw up a written agreement covering every possible scenario.

After all, "The last thing anyone wants is to be left having to pay the mortgage on their own or face repossession."

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