Almost £54.5bn worth of property has been sold with support from the Help to Buy scheme, recent figures have revealed.
Since its inception, Help to Buy has contributed to more than 170,000 first-time buyers getting a foot on the property ladder and 210,964 properties have been sold in total, according to the statistics running up to December 31, 2018. Through the Help to Buy equity loan, £11.71bn has been borrowed by buyers from the government and this equity has helped fund £54.48bn worth of homes.
Avant Life has looked who is eligible for the Help to Buy scheme and how it’s supporting homebuyers purchase their dream new-build property.
Who is the Help to Buy scheme available to?
Although you may think Help to Buy is just for first-time buyers, it can also be accessed by existing homeowners. The scheme has been devised to make new-build homes more affordable through buyers using a lower deposit (as little as 5 per cent) and taking a 20 per cent equity loan from the government – this loan is interest free for five years – on top of a mortgage. Help to Buy can be used on any new-build home which costs up to £600,000. The scheme is set to run until 2023.
Giving first-time buyers a helping hand
In 2018, almost 1,000 homes a week (52,067 in total) were sold on the Help to Buy scheme, with over 42,000 of these homes being accounted for by first-time buyers. The overall figure increased by 12 per cent year-on-year, when compared to the 46,298 completions in 2017.
There was also a strong increase in the number of first-time buyers year-on-year, rising by 14 per cent from the 37,478 properties sold under the Help to Buy scheme in 2017, to 42,748 in 2018.
In total, 171,053 homes have been bought by first-time buyers using Help to Buy since August 2013.
Finding the right home for you
Whether it’s a first-time buyer or a family looking for a new-build property, the price point achievable for homebuyers will differ – something which Help to Buy has supported through the scheme. Figures show that over a third of homes sold on the Help to Buy scheme were valued at £200,000 or less, and 45 per cent of new build homes sold were priced from £200,001 to £350,000. The smallest proportion of homes (18 per cent) were valued at over £350,000.
The mean price of houses sold was £258,223, with first-time buyers on average spending £222,995 and non-first-time buyers purchasing homes spending on average £279,995.
Overall, 57 per cent of the homes purchased had a price of £250,000 or less, indicating that there are proportionately more buyers in the lower price range. A similar pattern was seen with first-time buyers using Help to Buy, with almost two-thirds (62 per cent) of homes sold being priced under £250,000.
Supporting all household incomes
Of those homebuyers using the Help to Buy scheme, the average household income for applicants was £51,936, with existing homeowners having a slightly higher average when compared to the first-time buyers.
According to the figures, just over half (55 per cent) of borrowers had household incomes ranging between £20,000 and £50,000, whilst those applicants with incomes under £20,000 and over £100,000 counted for two per cent and four per cent respectively. For first-time buyers, 58 per cent had an income between £20,000 and £50,000.