The official Government Help to Buy website
ASPIRING home owners who want to take advantage of the government’s new Help to Buy – Equity Loan scheme are being encouraged to seize the opportunity and sign up to buy a home through the new initiative.
A national network of Help to Buy Agents, including Time2Buy for the Tees Valley and County Durham area, has launched a campaign to let people know they are here to help more prospective buyers buy a home through the Help to Buy scheme.
Today Carrie Thornton from Stockton added her support to the promotion after becoming a home owner for the first time through the initiative.
The 25-year-old said she was thrilled with the ease and cost of buying a brand new two bedroom home on Persimmon’s Norton development ‘The Elms’, with partner Nathan Spriggs, also 25.
“When we worked out the figures, we realised we could not rent for the price we pay for this,” said Carrie, a support worker for the NHS.
“We did not have to sacrifice much because the deposit was so low and we got our house on time and with lots of incentives. I am really happy with everything.”
Help to Buy – Equity Loan enables working people to buy a new build home up to the value of £600,000 with a 20% equity loan from the Government, which is interest-free for five years. This means the buyer – whether a first time buyer or someone looking to move up the property ladder – only needs to pay a 5% deposit, a fraction of the normal requirements in today’s mortgage market.
“We feel we have got plenty of options in five years’ time, when we have to start paying the interest,” added Carrie. “I really would encourage people to see what’s out there.”
Help to Buy Agents are appointed by Government to help buyers from start to finish, coordinating with the house builder, mortgage lender and solicitors. They also check buyers are eligible, credit-worthy, and demonstrate they can afford the mortgage and loan repayments. Stringent affordability checks will ensure people are not borrowing beyond their means, and the scheme is not available for landlords looking to invest in buy to let properties, or to second home buyers.
Time2Buy is the Help to Buy Agent for the County Durham and Tees Valley area and is a consortium made up of Fabrick Housing Group, Stockton Borough Council, Housing Hartlepool and Endeavour Housing Association.
Emma Bingham from Time2Buy said: “From a local perspective, the Help to Buy – Equity Loan is proving very popular, with over 200 applicants already having reserved a property in the Tees Valley and County Durham area since the scheme’s launch at the start of April.”
National Help to Buy Agency spokesperson, Matthew Harrison, added: “Most people just want the chance to follow in their grandparents’ and parents’ footsteps and buy a home of their own, for long-term security and a sense of stability in their lives. This scheme will give them that chance.”