Help to Buy completions up 4.6% as scheme nears close
Help to Buy completions in England totalled 52,703 between Q3 2018 and Q3 2019 – a rise of 4.6% compared to the previous year.
The latest Government figures show that first-time buyers bought 43,686 properties under the scheme in the year to 30 September 2019, up by 6.2% compared with the year to September 2018.
In Q3, the number of Help to Buy equity loans rose by 3.6% year-on-year to 11,676, worth a total of £847.9m (up 10% on last year).
Since the launch of the Help to Buy: Equity Loan scheme in April 2013, 248,075 properties have been bought, with first-time buyers accounting for 81% of total purchases.
The current Help to Buy scheme is due to end in April 2021. A new scheme will then run for two years, restricted to first-time buyers with regional property price caps.
Joseph Daniels, founder of offsite eco developer Project Etopia, commented: “Help to Buy continues to be a bait ball for buyers as they increasingly snap at this generous incentive while it lasts.
“The adjustment of the scheme in 2021 is now right around the corner. It will still be available to first-time buyers but regional price caps will begin to limit the size of the properties these purchasers can buy through the scheme.
“They know they may never have a better chance to get the home they want, as witnessed by the ever-increasing usage figures for the scheme. Buyers are clearly taking advantage while they still can.
“The only thing these buyers need to watch out for is the way current and future price caps will squeeze properties into a narrow band of price. This can push up the prices of properties, as well as drag them down. This happens because demand is driven up for a relatively small segment of the market, and buyers should be careful not to overpay as it may offset the benefits of the scheme in the long term when they come to sell.”
Source: Financial Reporter