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A Helping Hand From Help to Buy

By Lauren Hickey - 24 August 2018

Not only has the Government’s Help to Buy scheme offered financial assistance to almost a quarter of a million buyers, but it has also been praised for meeting its key objective, to support people trying to get on the housing ladder, with around 80% of those who have used the scheme being first time buyers.

However it should be remembered that it is also available to existing homeowners, making a huge difference to those looking to move to a larger property because they need more space for their growing family.

Since 2014, over 120,000 equity loans have been secured under the scheme, offering buyers up to 20% towards a home deposit. Not long ago the Government announced an extension of the initiative up until 2021, but at the same time said it could close earlier ‘if all of the funding is taken up [before then]’ so we mustn’t assume it will be around forever.

Biminster Homes and William Thompson Homes were advised to sign up for the Help to Buy Scheme at their Hazelwood Park development. This subsequently attracted a flurry of viewers, and 50% of buyers at the site have used the scheme. The developers found that the scheme did nothing to slow the sale progress; in fact, Sara Gerchen from Biminster Homes has nothing but praise for the initiative.

“As a company, we can testify how attractive the scheme is to both buyers and housebuilding companies alike,” she explains. “Once our agent, Beresfords, was able to advertise the fact that Help to Buy was available at Hazelwood Park, we saw viewings double.”

Beresfords Director Terry Holmes, agrees: “Help to Buy has proved really valuable, particularly for younger people unable to rely on the Bank of Mum and Dad. We strongly advise our builder clients, regardless of their size, to register for Help to Buy at the earliest stage they can. Fortunately, we’re used to setting this up for our developers in conjunction with our mortgage side Flagstone, so we’re more than happy to meet with builders and advise on Help To Buy and the best mix on a site.”