In a bid to help first-time buyers onto the ever-changing property ladder, the Government created the Help to Buy (HTB) schemes, Equity Loan and Shared Ownership. These were designed to give everyone the chance to purchase their own home.
Here’s a breakdown of the products, to help you work out which one is best for you:
1. Help to Buy: Equity Loan (April 2021 to March 2023)
The Help to Buy: Equity Loan is available for first time buyers to help them get onto the property ladder. It is available only on new build homes, and you must buy your home from a homebuilder registered for the Help to Buy: Equity Loan.
The Government will lend you up to 20% of the cost, so you’ll only need to contribute a 5% deposit and secure a 75% mortgage.
The Government don’t charge loan fees (interest) on the 20% loan for the first five years that you own your home, allowing you time to save more money towards paying the loan, or towards the deposit for another property in the future.
From year six, a fee of 1.75% is payable on the equity loan, which rises annually by CPI (Consumer Price Index) inflation plus 2%.
The price of your property will depend on where in England you buy it, however it can be up to the price of £437,600 for the South East of England. All the price brackets per region can be found here.
*The last date you can reserve your home and apply for the Help to Buy: Equity Loan is 31st October 2022. This should allow the housebuilder enough time to complete the home and for you to legally own it ready for when the scheme ends in March 2023.
If you don’t think you can afford a large mortgage to fund your own home, Help to Buy: Shared Ownership could be a great option for you. This scheme enables you to buy a share of your home – between 25% and 75%– while paying a subsidised rent on the remaining share. This is a great option, offering more flexibility than renting, whilst growing equity in a property. It also offers you the opportunity to purchase more shares, known as staircasing, when you can afford to and eventually own 100% in some cases.
You can use HTB: Shared Ownership if you are a first-time buyer, an existing shared owner looking to move, you used to own a home or are in the process of selling. Your household needs to earn less than £80,000 outside London, or less than £90,000 a year in London, to qualify.
You can buy a newly built home or an existing one through resale programmes from housing associations. You’ll need to take out a mortgage to pay for your share of the property’s purchase price, or fund this through your savings. Shared Ownership properties are always leasehold with the housing association or registered providers.
Registering with your local Help to Buy programme is a great starting point – you can then speak to our Shared Ownership specialists, who can help you to locate your perfect home, take care of your finances and oversee the entire moving process for you!
3. Help to Buy: ISA
The Help to Buy: ISA closed to new accounts on 30 November 2019. If you opened one before this date, you will be able to continue saving into your account until November 2029.
Providing you save £200 per month, you’ll receive a 25% government top up and you can save up to £12,000 in your account, meaning you’ll receive an extra £3,000 from the Government when you close your account. When you are ready to purchase your property, you will need to close your ISA and instruct a solicitor to apply for your government bonus. The property you wish to buy must have a purchase price of up to £250,000 (or up to £450,000 in London).
If you’re currently exploring the various routes to purchasing a home, contact Romans New Homes for further information on the products available.
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