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First-time Buyer

Revised Help to Buy scheme open to applicants from December

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

The reconfigured Help to Buy scheme will be open to applicants from 16 December, Homes England has announced.

The changed equity loan initiative will be open to first-time buyers only and is set to run from 2021 to 2023.

Homebuilders are now starting to market new build homes with eligible buyers able to reserve homes from December and move in from 1 April.

As with the previous guise of the scheme, the government will lend homebuyers up to 20% of the cost of a new-build home with borrowers required to pay a further 5%. The loan is interest-free for five years.

But under the new scheme Help to Buy has regional price limits set at 1.5 times the average first-time buyer price in each region of England.

It’s hoped this will keep the price of new homes closer to the regional first-time buyer average.

Housing secretary, Robert Jenrick, said: “The government is providing more ways to help families onto the housing ladder, and provide that life-changing moment when you get the keys to your own home.

“Alongside first homes, shared ownership and our £12bn investment in affordable housing, our new Help to Buy scheme will help thousands more families take their first step into a home of their own.”

Will German, director of Help to Buy at Homes England, added: “Help to Buy has already helped more than 270,000 people into home ownership and 82% are first-time buyers.

“The new Help to Buy builds on this success with first-time buyers in front of mind.

“We’re pleased we can help homebuyers with smaller deposits to own a home, at a time where there are fewer options open to them.

“Housing, like most sectors, has experienced a slowdown during the Covid-crisis. But Help to Buy continues to give homebuilders the confidence to keep on building at a more crucial time than ever.”