Since its launch in 2013, the government’s Help to Buy loan scheme has helped thousands of buyers across the UK purchase a new home by helping to boost deposit values and keep repayments lower in the short term than on the open market.
The new changes to the current Help to Buy scheme start in 2021, and while the current scheme is available to anyone looking to purchase a new build home, only first time buyers will be eligible moving forward. We’ve broken down the new Help to Buy scheme to explain what these changes mean for you and how they can help you purchase your first home.
How does Help to Buy work currently across the UK?
With a Help to Buy Equity loan, the government loans you up to 20% of the value of your home to help cover the purchase costs. The maximum loan increases up to 40% if you are buying a home in London. This means that you only need a 5% deposit, helping to keep initial buying costs down for buyers. Currently, to be eligible, you must be purchasing a new build home worth up to £600,000 and be able to secure a mortgage for the remaining value of the property.
The loan also remains interest free for the first five years, helping to keep costs down for your first years in your new home.
When will the new Help to Buy scheme start?
The government’s new Help to Buy scheme will come into effect from April 1st, 2021 and will run until March 2023. The new Help to Buy loan will only be available to first time buyers.
Whereas the previous loan was available for properties up to £600,000 across the country, the new Help to Buy loan will include regional price caps, helping to ensure that those who need the scheme most will be able to use it. These price caps will be based on predicted averages in each region of the country – meaning that the maximum value for a Help to Buy home in the South East will be different to the maximum value in the West Midlands. The maximum value for a Help to Buy home in London will be £600,000.
- North East – £186,100
- North West – £224,400
- Yorkshire and Humber – £228,100
- East Midlands – £261,900
- West Midlands – £255,600
- East of England – £407,400
- London – £600,000
- South East – £437,600
- South West – £349,000
I have reserved a home with the current Help to Buy scheme. Will there be an extension?
To help buyers that have already purchased with Help to Buy and have experienced building delays due to the coronavirus pandemic, as well as those looking to buy in the next few months, the deadline for the current scheme is being extended. This means that housebuilders and developers, such as L&Q, will have until 28th February 2021 to finish the building work on their Help to Buy homes. However, there will be no change to the deadline for the legal Completion of sale – which means that all sales under the current Help to Buy scheme must legally Complete by 31st March, 2021.
If you have reserved a Help to Buy home before 30th June 2020 and will not be able to legally complete your sale by the 31st March deadline, contact Homes England to discuss your circumstances. Homes England is working with buyers who have experienced severe delays due to the pandemic and will look to provide a Completion extension where necessary. Buyers who have been granted a Completion extension will have until 31st May 2021 to Complete their purchase.
*All information was correct at the time of posting