There are many Government initiatives in place to help you make you get on and move up the property ladder. Please be aware that we do not support all of these schemes.
Right to Buy
We support the Government’s Right to Buy scheme.
This scheme is for tenants who rent from their local council or housing association and allows you to buy your home at a discounted price. There is a maximum discount amount of £77,900, increasing to £103,900 if you are living in London.
To qualify for the Right to Buy scheme you must have been a council tenant for at least three years.
View the Right to Buy website for more information and to see if you qualify.
We are supporting the Government’s shared ownership scheme.
Shared ownership is where you buy a share of your home and then pay rent to a Housing Association for the remaining share of the property. You will pay a reduced rent on the share of the property you do not own and will need a mortgage to fund your initial share, which can be anything from 25% to 75%. You will later have the opportunity to buy a bigger share in the property up to 100%, this is known as ‘staircasing’. Anyone living outside of London whose household earns below £80,000 per year, or £90,000 per year in London can buy a home through the shared ownership scheme.
For more information visit the Governments shared ownership website.
Help to Buy: ISA
If you’re saving to move into your first home, a Help to Buy: ISA is a great initiative to help you on the way. You can save up to £200 each month in your ISA, earn interest from us on your savings and get a 25% Government boost on your savings when you buy your home. And during the calendar month you open your account can further boost your savings by depositing a maximum of £1,200 into your account.
There is a minimum Government bonus of £400 so you’ll need to have at least £1,600 saved and a maximum bonus of £3,000.
Couples who are both first time buyers can combine their bonuses when buying their first home, however you cannot contribute to a Help to Buy: ISA and a Cash ISA within the same tax year.
Your solicitor will apply for your bonus when you close your account. To qualify for the bonus the property you are buying cannot exceed £250,000 or £450,000 in you are buying in London. There are however some limitations with the Government bonus.
- It cannot be used as your deposit due at exchange of contracts;
- It cannot be used to pay your solicitors fees;
- It cannot be used to cover estate agency fees; and
- It cannot be used for any other indirect costs associated with buying your home.
Visit our Help to Buy: ISA page for further details on our account.
For more information about the Help to Buy: ISA scheme, visit the Government's website.
Forces Help to Buy
We are supporting the Forces Help to Buy Scheme.
This scheme allows servicemen and servicewomen to borrow up to 50% of their salary, interest free, to buy their first home or move to another property. To qualify, you must be in regular service and have served for at least two years and have at least six months service remaining when you apply.
There interest free loan amount is capped at a maximum amount of £25,000 so you will need a mortgage to fund the rest of the purchase. The Government loan can also be used towards your deposit and other costs associated with buying a home including solicitors and estate agent fees.
The interest free amount can be repaid over 10 years and you will be able to sub-let your property if your tour of duty requires you to serve away from the area you live in for a fixed period.
The scheme is available until 31 December 2019. For more information visit the Government's website.
Starter Homes scheme
We do not currently accept mortgages using the Starter Home scheme.
This is a new Government scheme where 200,000 new build homes are being made available to first time buyers, with a minimum of 20% discount off the purchase price. This is only available to first time buyers aged under 40 years old.
For more information visit the starter homes website.
Help to Buy: Equity Loans
We do not currently accept mortgages using the Help to Buy: Equity loans scheme.
This scheme is designed to help those who have a small deposit get on and move up the property ladder sooner than expected.
You will need to have a minimum of a 5% deposit saved to allow you to borrow up to 20% of the property price interest free from the Government. You will then borrow the remaining amount from a mortgage provider, meaning you may be able to get a better interest rate due to the lower mortgage amount required.
This scheme is available until 2021. For more information visit the Government website.