Help to Buy has so far benefited 150,000 to own their own home

Posted 11 March 2016 by Helen Christie

The government has released details of how the Help to Buy scheme has benefited thousands of people in the country...

Over 150,000 people have achieved their aspiration of home ownership thanks to the government’s flagship housing scheme Help to Buy.

Since the launch of the Help to Buy equity loan and mortgage guarantee schemes, over 150,000 completions under the scheme have taken place, with 80% having been made by first-time buyers. The average house price was £188,380 significantly below the national average, with over half of Help to Buy completions have been for new build homes. 95% of Help to Buy completions took place outside of London.

First-time buyers

As today’s statistics show, the Help to Buy schemes continue to benefit first-time buyers overwhelmingly, with 118,000 households having bought their first home thanks to the scheme.

This is 80% of overall Help to Buy buyers, demonstrating that the scheme is successfully targeting those who need help getting on the housing ladder.

First-time buyers will have a further boost from the Help to Buy ISA launched in December 2015. The scheme has already helped a quarter of a million first-time buyers save for their first home by providing a bonus of up to £3,000.

Helping people across the UK

With almost all completions outside London, the highest number of homes through the mortgage guarantee scheme have been in the north west region.

The equity loan, a scheme for new build properties, is particularly prevalent in the south east. First-time buyers and second-steppers will also have a further boost from the London Help to Buy scheme launched in February 2016. The scheme supports purchases of new build homes in the capital by offering a 5% deposit backed by an equity loan of up to 40% from the government.

Search for Help to Buy properties

Figures for the mortgage guarantee scheme also show completions have been least concentrated in regions where house price growth is highest.

In London the scheme makes up just 1% of all mortgage lending compared to an average of 3% across the country.

Getting Britain building

Over half of the homes bought through Help to Buy are new build properties, helping to contribute to the 14% rise in private house building since the launch of Help to Buy.

This has supported new housing construction output with total new housing construction activity in 2015 the highest on record. Annual housing starts are now at an eight year high with over 700,000 new homes built since 2010.

Responsible lending

Today’s figures demonstrate that Help to Buy was designed to support responsible lending: the average house price for both parts of the scheme, at £188,380 (£155,897 for the mortgage guarantee and £220,825 for the equity loan scheme), remains significantly below the national average house price of £288,000.

Chancellor George Osborne says: “The government is committed to helping people achieve the aspiration of buying their own home, and all our Help to Buy schemes have now helped almost half a million people.”

House builders have also welcomed the role Help to Buy has played in boosting supply. Home Builders Federation executive chairman Stewart Baseley says: “Help to Buy continues to help stimulate demand for new build homes. As a result, we have seen huge increases in house building activity and the supply of much needed new homes.

We estimate the larger house builders have increased output by 50% since the trough with overall supply up by 37% in the last two years. The industry remains committed to working with government on policies that enable it to maintain increases in build rates such that more people have access to high quality new homes.”

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