The Government scheme Help to Buy was first introduced in 2013. Since then, it has helped more than 200,000 people purchase a new-build home. And there has even been a surge of interest in Help to Buy post-lockdown as more homebuyers have had time to research a wider range of purchasing options.
Allowing homebuyers to put down a smaller deposit, the scheme’s aim is to help more people get on the property ladder, especially those who are struggling to save up for a deposit.
The current Help to Buy scheme
The current scheme is for first-time buyers and existing homeowners looking to purchase a new-build home worth up to £600,000 in England. The buyer can then put just a 5% deposit down and borrow up to 20% from the Government, which is interest- free for five years.
After that, interest fees begin at 1.75% of the loan and rise every year in April. A monthly management fee of £1 will be charged for the life of the loan. The equity loan must be repaid when the home is sold, the mortgage is paid off or at the end of the loan term.
If a buyer puts down a 5% deposit and receives a 20% loan from the Government, this leaves them to secure a 75% mortgage. There is a wide choice of competitive mortgage rates available under this scheme. This scheme is available for purchases that complete by 31 March 2021. There are different rules for Help to Buy in Wales, Scotland and London.
What are the changes coming to Help to Buy?
Help to Buy: Equity Loan (2021-23) changes will come into effect from 1 April 2021 and will only be available for first-time buyers. Regional price caps will also be introduced, meaning the amount buyers can spend on a property through the scheme will depend on where the purchase is being made.
The upcoming restricted eligibility requirements has been made to help ensure Help to Buy reaches those who need it the most. Check out the table below to see the regional price caps that are to be introduced.
|Region||Price cap for Help to Buy
homes April 2021 to March 2023
|Yorkshire and The Humber||£228,100|
|East of England||£407,400|
Source: HM Government
Help to Buy North West
With the changes to Help to Buy coming into play, first-time buyers can buy a new-build property in the North West of England with a sale price up to £224,400. In the last 12 months, the average price paid for a property in the North West is nearly £199,000, according to data from Zoopla. This allows first-time buyers a chance to purchase property more affordably.
If you’re interested in buying a new-build property under this scheme, keep an eye out for the Help to Buy logo on new-build developments and ask the property developers about the scheme.