Using the Help to Buy scheme to buy a new build

Barcan+Kirby’s new build solicitors explain how the Help to Buy scheme can help first-time buyers to get onto the property ladder

The Help to Buy scheme is a government-led initiative that offers first-time buyers support in purchasing a new build home in England. This scheme is due to end in March 2023.

Help to Buy provides budding homeowners with an equity loan that contributes towards a deposit, allowing you to pay 5%, rather than the standard 10%.

Through the scheme, you receive an interest-free loan of up to 20% (40% in London) of the property value. You must take out a standard mortgage for at least 25% of the purchase price and, after five years, you will pay interest fees of 1.75% of the loan, which rises to 2% per year on top of the increase in the Retail Price Index.

What to consider

Help to Buy can help you to buy your first home sooner, with a smaller deposit and access to a cheaper mortgage rate.

However, the scheme limits you to certain new build properties sold by a Help to Buy registered homebuilder and the use of specific lenders. Financially, the loan will be increasingly expensive as the repayment amount isn’t fixed, and there’s a risk of negative equity.

There’s also a maximum purchase price for using the scheme, depending on the region.

To be eligible, you must be over 18 and a first-time buyer. If you’re married, in a civil partnership or purchasing with a partner, you must make a joint application and you will both need to be eligible.

How can I apply?

You can apply by finding an agent on the Help to Buy website. Before doing so, it’s important to ensure you have all the finances in place, including:

  • A 5% deposit, payable on the exchange of contracts
  • A fee to reserve the property
  • Conveyancing and legal fees

You should also make sure that you will be able to repay the interest fees.

Once your loan is confirmed, you should instruct a conveyancing solicitor who specialises in Help to Buy purchases.

For a no-obligation quote, call our new build conveyancing solicitors on 0117 325 2929 or visit

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