First time buyers pay 8% more for new homes through Help to Buy
11 October 2018
By Andi Forsythe
New research by reallymoving.com reveals that first time buyers using the Government’s Help to Buy scheme are paying on average 8% more than those buying new homes without Help to Buy.
According to data collected from almost 70,000 first time buyers using reallymoving for home move services, first time buyers purchasing a new build home without Help to Buy pay on average £257,908 compared to £277,968 paid by those who use the scheme.
New homes already command a 16% premium compared to second hand properties, reflecting the fact that they are chain free and come with brand new fixtures, fittings and appliances. However, an additional 8% is being paid on homes sold through Help to Buy.
It is possible that buyers who are using the scheme can afford to be more generous in the price they are prepared to offer, in addition to developers apparently demanding higher prices for Help to Buy homes.
A flagship housing policy of the Conservative Government, Help to Buy enables people to buy new homes with deposits of just 5%, with the Government providing an equity loan for an additional 20%, or 40% in London. Without the scheme, many buyers would be unable to afford to get on the property ladder, as they would lack sufficient savings to raise a full 25% deposit themselves. Help to Buy may encourage first time buyers to choose a more expensive property in order to benefit from an equity loan, making the deposit affordable.
Rob Houghton, CEO of reallymoving.com said: “The Help to Buy scheme has provided a leg up onto the housing ladder for many first time buyers but this data suggests that first time buyers may not be getting such a good deal after all. When they come to sell this could increase the risk that their home isn’t worth what they paid for it.”
Beneficiaries of the Help to Buy scheme may face difficulty when selling their property on, as it struggles to compete with new homes nearby offering Help to Buy, impacting its value. At a time when house prices are falling, particularly in London and the south east, first time buyers are at even greater risk of finding themselves in negative equity.
When it comes to repaying the equity loan, buyers can only pay off 50% or 100%, with no option for smaller payments. Interest starts at 1.75% after 5 years and increases every year at inflation plus 1%. Those hoping to sell may also find that as they are required to repay the equity loan in full, they are unable to also raise a deposit on their next property, leaving them trapped.
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Notes to Editors
Launched in 1999, reallymoving.com has become the UK's leading provider of free instant quotes for home-moving services, serving its 2 millionth customer at the beginning of 2018. It is an independent and privately financed company, majority owned by its management and Directors.
During 2017 reallymoving.com received 280,000 registrations and generated 980,000 quotes on behalf of its UK-wide network of partners, representing approximately £172 million worth of work in 12 months. reallymoving.com believes approximately 8% of the UK’s home movers in 2017 received quotes from the site.
reallymoving.com provides instant quotes for Conveyancing, Surveys, Removals, Home Reports (in Scotland) and Energy Performance Certificates.
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