A total of 158,883 properties have been purchased using the Help to Buy equity loan scheme, according to the latest figures from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.
The total value of these Government-backed loans was £8.27bn, and these were used to purchase new build properties worth a total of £39.28bn, according to this data.
Eight out of 10 of these purchases (81 per cent) were made by first-time buyers. The average price of a property bought under scheme was £247,230, with a Help to Buy loan of £52,026,
These latest figures cover the period from 1 April 2013 – when this scheme was introduced – until the 31 December 2017.
These loans can only be used by first-time buyers, and other purchasers, buying a new build property.
In London the maximum equity loan was increased from 20 to 40 per cent in February. From then until the end of last year there were a total of 6,867 Help to Buy completions in London, of which the majority (5,546) were made with an equity loan above 20 per cent.
Legal & General Mortgage Club’s new build manager Craig Hall says these figures showed the number of buyers using this scheme continued to rise year-on year. He says this was the largest number of completions per quarter.
The Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA) executive director Kate Davies says: “These statistics show that there is still considerable appetite for Help to Buy among first-time buyers.
“As we approach what is a pivotal juncture for the industry – with the scheme due to come to an end in 2021 – clarity is urgently needed over what will come next.”
She adds: “The scheme has already helped over 150,000 households into home owners and with the government setting itself targets to build a million new homes by 2020, it seems counter-intuitive to close the door on what has been a successful vehicle for helping to purchase those new homes.”
IMLA’s own figures show that the Help to Buy scheme made up 27 per cent of all new housing completions between April 2013 and March 2017.
Davies says: “This shows its role in helping people get onto the property ladder cannot be underestimated”.
Hall adds: “Help to Buy continues to play a fundamental role in helping first-time buyers step onto the property ladder, accounting for 81 per cent of total first time buyer purchase and around 20 per cent new build additions in 2017.”
He adds: “With increasing numbers of lenders entering the Help to Buy market, we need to have a decision made sooner rather than later to allow for long-term planning.”