Posted by Natasha Young in Your Move magazine 1st December 2015
The government’s new Help to Buy: ISA will be a welcome enhancement to existing schemes for first-time buyers when it is launched today (1 December), according to Merseyside property experts.
The initiative was announced by Chancellor George Osborne as part of his Budget in March, and will see the government provide a boost of up to £3,000 for first-time buyers saving for deposits to step onto the property ladder.
For each £200 they save in a newly available Help to Buy: ISA account, the government will pay £50 until the maximum bonus is reached, and accounts are available to each first-time buyer not household, enabling saving couples to add their bonuses together.
Peter Vella, regional sales and marketing director at housing developer Countryside, claims the scheme will “unlock home ownership opportunities for even more local families and young professionals” as it adds to benefits other Help to Buy initiatives are already providing.
He says: “First time buyers are calling out for new homes in their local areas, therefore it’s crucial that those properties come with a realistic price tag. The Help to Buy 5% deposit scheme has played a key role in the affordability for first time buyers, and as a result we’ve experienced a significant increase in younger buyers at our Liverpool developments.”
Alan Bevan, managing director of City Residential (pictured), also believes Help to Buy: ISA is a “good scheme,” and suggests: “Any scheme into which the government will ‘top up’ has to be seen as a positive for both the first-time buyers and developers – many of whom are already benefiting greatly from the Help to Buy scheme.”
However, he adds: “Perhaps the only real concern is that the maximum government bonus is £3,000, which may well have limited effect in a market where the average UK asking price is now over £200,000.”