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17 May 2021

Help to Buy Scheme Questions from our Visitors

The Help to Buy scheme is a Government initiative that makes buying your first home that little bit easier. A low 5% deposit and up to 40% equity loan can help first-time buyers on their first step of the property ladder. There is a lot of information you can research online about Help to Buy but we thought it would be helpful to collate some questions from some of our recent visitors to No.1 Millbrook Park, answering queries direct from real people looking to buy their first home. Read on to find out more about Help to Buy in London, with helpful answers from our Sales Director Sean Ruane.


How long will the Help to Buy scheme run for?

The current Help to Buy scheme runs until the 31st March 2023.


Can I pay off the equity loan before the end of the first 5 years?

You can pay off all or part of your equity loan any time before then. At any time, you can make part repayments of at least 10% of what your home is worth, to reduce how much you owe. For example, you could repay 10% if you took out a 20% loan. Or repay 10%, 20% or 30% at a time if you took out a 40% loan. To work out how much you pay back we need to know the current market value of your home. You will need to get a Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) valuation report. A qualified surveyor will estimate the value of your home, based on its condition and the current housing market. If you are selling your home, we use the current market value of your home as determined by a Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) valuer, or the price it sells for, whichever is highest. In all other circumstances, the market value will be determined by an RICS valuer.


How does Help to Buy Equity Loan work?

It enables first time buyers to get on the property ladder with a loan of up to 40% of the property’s value from Homes England. This makes things much more affordable. As well, the scheme means you only have to pay a 5% deposit, making that savings goal a little more realistic for many people.


Can I apply for Help to Buy if I previously owned another property?

You have to be a genuine first-time buyer, so never having owned property in UK (or anywhere in the world). That even includes owning land. So the short answer would be no.


Can I increase my deposit higher than 5%?

Yes, you can pay up to a 25% deposit if you want to.


How do I know if I qualify for help to buy?

There is no salary cap to qualify from Help to Buy but we would suggest you seek financial advice and speak to a mortgage broker to check the Help to Buy affordability checker to see if you qualify. You’ll have to meet a set of criteria that your broker can advise on.


How much is the reservation fee on Help to Buy? 

It’s £500.


Can I repay all or part of your equity loan at any time?

You can only repay the full remaining equity loan if you decide to sell your property before the five-year loan term. You can’t pay any instalments during the loan term.


Is my equity loan interest-free? And how many years is it interest-free for

Yes, it’s interest-free for 5 years.


What is the maximum purchase price on Help to Buy?

Help to Buy is available on homes up to the purchase price of £600,000 in London.


We hope you found that helpful! We’re opening up our Instagram for more questions during the week of the 17th of May so feel free to head over and put your questions to our team!


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