The Help-to-Buy Scheme was an incredibly popular government-funded initiative designed to help first-time buyers get onto the property ladder. But after 10 years the scheme has now come to an end and so, many people are asking the question, “what happens now”?
In this blog article, we’ll dig into the implications of this scheme coming to an end and explore some of the other options available for first-time buyers. Buckle up and let’s take a look at all the facts.
When does Help-to-Buy end?
Help-to-Buy came to an end on 31 March 2023, and there are currently no plans to reinvigorate the scheme.
The Help-to-Buy equity loan scheme was a great boon for those looking to buy new-build homes. By providing Government loans of up to 20% of the property’s sale price, the scheme enabled people to purchase a home with only a small deposit (as little as 5%!). This made it much easier for many people to find their way onto the property ladder.
How did Help-to-Buy change in 2021?
Since its launch in 2013, the Help-to-Buy Equity Loan scheme has become increasingly popular among homebuyers. According to Government figures, over 225,000 buyers have taken advantage of the scheme, and its use had been steadily increasing over time. In the last quarter of 2018 alone, the scheme accounted for more than 60 percent of all new home purchases.
In the past, it had been available to both existing homeowners and first-time buyers, but from 2021 it was only available to first-time buyers, because of a focused intention to help those who needed it the most. Among the other changes for 2021 was the introduction of regional value caps, which means the system was only useful for homes below a specific price.
What is replacing Help-to-Buy?
Without the Help-to-Buy scheme, some first time buyers may have to save up for a little longer to afford the deposit they need for a mortgage. While nothing is exactly replacing Help-to-Buy, there are however a few other options for new buyers, keep reading to find out what they are…
The Lifetime ISA is a long-term savings account that allows you to put away up to £4,000 per year, with the Government adding a 25% bonus on top. This money can then be used towards the purchase of your first home, or withdrawn after you turn 60. With a Lifetime ISA, you can save up for your deposit with the help of the Government bonus.
Mortgage Guarantee Scheme
In April 2021 the Government introduced the Mortgage Guarantee Scheme. This scheme, which is designed to allow first time buyers to take out 95% mortgages, has been extended through to December 2023. A significant challenge for many first time buyers is saving enough money for a significant deposit, to ensure lenders have the confidence to lend. This scheme changes that, encouraging lenders to provide mortgages to buyers with deposits of 5%, helping people get onto the property ladder.
It is important to remember if you are looking to buy using the Mortgage Guarantee Scheme, like with the Help-to-Buy scheme, there is currently an end date to this, so you will need to take advantage of it this year if you are able to do so!
First Homes Scheme
A few Local Government locations are offering access to a First Homes Scheme, which can support first-time buyers in getting onto the property ladder. There is a criteria for this scheme that a buyer need to qualify for, so it’s worth checking with your Local Authority to find out your options, as this scheme isn’t open everywhere.
Even if none of the above schemes are relevant to you. With the right support and guidance, you can still work towards your goal of owning your own home.
Buying a home with Hive Homes
At Hive Homes, We’re looking forward to developing these high-quality homes that will support the needs of local people. If you are interested in buying your first home and would like to speak to someone who can advise you on the starting process, please contact us today.