Help to Buy has been positive but should be restricted to FTBs

Help to Buy has been positive but should be restricted to FTBs

The Help to Buy (HtB) scheme has already been extended, but there are fresh indicators that the government is considering extending the scheme beyond its current end date.

United Trust Bank’s most recent broker sentiment poll asked nearly 180 finance brokers if they thought the Help to Buy initiatives had a positive impact on the UK residential property market.

A 56% majority agreed that it has had a largely positive impact, while 33% said the net result of Help to Buy has been largely neutral.

UTB also asked brokers what changes they would like to see made to the scheme criteria if it was extended, with most respondents asking for Buy to Help to be restricted to First Time Buyers only.

According to recent government figures, over 169,000 properties have been bought using an equity loan since the scheme was launched in 2013 and just over 80% were for First Time Buyers.

Other suggestions from brokers included extending the scheme beyond just new homes and eliminating the requirement for the Help to Buy Agent to agree which valuer is used on a remortgage and instead to use the lender’s valuation.

Noel Meredith, Executive Director at United Trust Bank, commented: “We agree with the majority of brokers responding to this poll that the Help to Buy initiatives have been broadly positive and we would also be keen to see the scheme extended beyond the current 2021 end date.

“HtB has assisted thousands of people who may otherwise have been unable to get on to the property ladder to buy their own home. It has also provided support to developers, many of them SMEs, by offering their prospective purchasers a tangible financial helping hand and I have no doubt that HtB has boosted activity in the starter homes sector.

“Whatever the future holds for Help to Buy, UTB remains committed to supporting projects put forward by experienced house builders who can demonstrate knowledge of their market, knowledge of their customers and have a proven ability to deliver successful developments.”

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