New Homes: How Help to Buy Helped Many of Our First Time Buyers
As the government’s Help to Buy scheme draws to a close, we reflect on how it worked and made a difference, and what other help exists for first time buyers.
Help to Buy launched in 2013 to help first time buyers with affordability. With a government-backed equity loan of up to 20% of their property’s value interest free for the first five years, buyers could proceed with a 75% mortgage and a deposit of just 5%.
Over the last decade, we have helped 151 homeowners secure their first home with Help to Buy. It has been in place across 10 Park Lane Group developments within Eastbourne, Bexhill, St. Leonards, and Hastings, with the scheme having been used for 70% of the property sales in four of these.
We are also proud of an immaculate track record, having completed successfully on every Help to Buy sale.
Applications for the scheme closed in October 2022, with the deadline for all homes to be built and structurally complete by the end of the year. Whilst The Park Lane Group met this original deadline for all our buyers, many developers didn’t. To prevent people from losing their new homes, Help to Buy were forced to extend it to 31st January 2023 and subsequently to 17th March, with legal completion and handover by 31st March this year.
In completing on all our Help to Buy sales, we were able to see 10 delighted homeowners into their new Park Lane Group homes by January 2023.
The Park Lane Group were early advocates of Help to Buy, having recognised how it could help both prospective buyers and the housebuilding sector.
By the time it concludes at the end of March, over 360,000 people will have bought their home via the scheme. Since its inception, it has helped stimulate the housing market, provided employment and driven up training and skills to boost the economy.
We have seen first-hand how our buyers have benefitted from the scheme. Hear from two recent buyers at Wateringbury Way in Eastbourne:
According to Ashley, “The Park Lane Group made the whole process easy and stress-free. The team worked hard to ensure I completed on my house before the Help to Buy deadline ended and made me feel relaxed that they had it all in hand. The Help to Buy scheme certainly made a big difference for me. It feels so good to be on the property ladder now and I feel more secure financially.”
Hannah commented, “From start to finish we have been so impressed. The Park Lane Group kept to all their promises and made sure we were in before Christmas. Our home is beyond perfect. It was straight forward to buy with The Help to Buy Scheme because they knew it well and lots of their other buyers had bought with it. We were able to raise a 5% deposit but would have really struggled to find a larger deposit, so that was a real bonus for us.”
Whilst there are currently no plans to extend or replace the Help to Buy Equity Loan scheme, there are other schemes by the Government, such as the Help to Buy ISA and the Lifetime ISA (LISA).
Anyone who opened a Help to Buy ISA before the end of November 2019, can use this for a deposit on a property bought before December 2030. This ISA has closed to new applicants and has a savings limit of £200 a month, however.
The LISA meanwhile, enables prospective homeowners to put in up to £4,000 each year and the Government adds a bonus 25%. Furthermore, if you’re buying with another first-time buyer who also has a LISA, both LISAs can go towards the same property.
You can find out more about Lifetime ISAs on the government website at: https://www.gov.uk/lifetime-isa
For anyone looking to buy, it is worth registering your details with The Park Lane Group to be among the first to hear about our upcoming homes and developments. To do so, contact email@example.com
You can also find out more about our homes at parklanegroup.net