Help to Buy: Pros and Cons

Grey and white dining room interior - find a Help to Buy home on Share to Buy!

What are the pros and cons of buying a Help to Buy home?

While the Help to Buy equity loan offers a fantastic opportunity for first time buyers to take those vital steps towards home ownership, it’s also important to weigh up your options. Check out our Help to Buy pros and cons to see if the scheme is right for you!

Help to Buy has closed to new applicants

Please note that the Help to Buy equity loan closed to new applicants on October 31st, 2022. 

If you’re a buyer eligible for the equity loan, and you submitted your application before the cut off, your homebuilder must finish building your home by Saturday 31st December, 2022. You must then legally complete and get the keys to your new property by 6pm on Friday 31st March, 2023. It has been confirmed that there will be no extensions or exceptions.

Find out more on Share to Buy or learn about Help to Buy alternatives including Shared Ownership and other home-buying and affordable rental options.


Help to Buy Overview:

Help to Buy is a government backed scheme which aims to help first time buyers get on to the property ladder. The Help to Buy equity loan enables purchasers to buy a new build home with the help of an equity loan, also known as shared equity.

The government provides a loan of up to 20% (40% within Greater London) of the home, so the purchaser only needs to raise a 5% deposit, with a 75% mortgage (55% within Greater London) making up the rest. Please note that the Help to Buy: Equity Loan is subject to eligibility, terms and conditions.


Pros of Help to Buy:

  • Legally, you own 100% of the property.
  • The buyer will only need to raise a 5% deposit of the full purchase price.
  • As the loan counts towards your deposit, you may be able to take out a mortgage where you might otherwise struggle. This also means that you don’t have to take out a costly 95% mortgage.
  • You do not pay any interest on your loan during the first five years.
  • There is no maximum household income cap on this scheme.
  • You have 25 years before you need to pay back the loan in full.


Cons of Help to Buy:

  • The Help to Buy equity loan is only available for new build properties, not resale homes.
  • The home you are purchasing must not exceed the regional price cap for your area – for example, up £600,000 in London, £437,600 in the South East, £224,400 in the North West, etc.
  • Only suitable if you can afford the mortgage repayments for the value of the entire property.
  • After the initial five year period, you will be charged an annual fee of 1.75% on the amount of the outstanding loan. This fee will increase each year with inflation.
  • Your loan will become more expensive over time and must be repaid in chunks of at least 10%. The amount you repay is also not fixed and will fluctuate with the value of your home.


For further information about the home-buying and application process with the Help to Buy: Equity Loan, please refer to the Help to Buy Agent in your area.


We hope you found our Help to Buy pros and cons helpful! If you’d like to find out more about the Help to Buy equity loan, see our Help to Buy 101 article or check out our helpful guides and FAQsShare to Buy is a one stop shop for first time buyers looking to get a foot on the property ladder. Start planning your future today and check out our available properties.