Accessing the Help to Buy: Equity Loan
Buying with Help to Buy
As of Thursday 2nd January 2020, prospective buyers will need to apply for the Help to Buy: Equity Loan via one of three Help to Buy Agents.
These agents have been appointed by the government to offer the scheme in England and are on hand to support you in the purchase of your new build home using a Help to Buy: Equity Loan.
The agents offer guidance on the equity loan, eligibility and affordability criteria, and can support you in the process of purchasing a home through the scheme.
Who is my Help to Buy Agent?
The new Help to Buy Agents are as follows:
Plus Dane Housing are the Help to Buy Agent for the following areas: Cheshire, Cumbria, Durham, East Riding of Yorkshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Merseyside, North Yorkshire, Northumberland, South Yorkshire, Tyne and Wear and West Yorkshire.
BPHA are the Help to Buy Agent for the following areas: Derbyshire, Herefordshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, London, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Rutland, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, West Midlands and Worcestershire.
Radian are the Help to Buy Agent for the following areas: Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Bristol, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, East Sussex, Essex, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Isle of Wight, Kent, Norfolk, Oxfordshire, Somerset, Suffolk, Surrey, West Sussex and Wiltshire.
For those who are already in the process of buying a new home using the equity loan, the Help to Buy website states that they will have provided the relevant agent with everything they need to progress your purchase. They will also be able to put you in touch with the new agent who is responsible for homes in your area.
What is Help to Buy?
Help to Buy is a government backed scheme which aims to help first time buyers get a foot onto 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% of the home, so the purchaser only needs to raise a 5% deposit, with a 75% mortgage making up the rest. As the equity 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.
What is London Help to Buy?
To reflect the current property prices in the capital, the government increased the upper limit for the equity loan from 20% to 40%, enabling buyers to get a foot on the property ladder within Greater London. This means that the buyer is still only required to raise a 5% deposit but with a 55% mortgage to make up the rest.