Government supports first-time buyers with A?100m

Government supports first-time buyers with A?100m

In its most recent attempt to revive the UK housing market, the Government has pledged an extra A?100 million to help first-time buyers.

Housing Minister, Margaret Beckett, is increasing the budget of the HomeBuy Direct scheme (which was set up in September) from A?300 million to A?400 million.

To date, over 130 developers have signed up to the initiative, which is open to households with incomes below A?60,000.

Social tenants, key workers and other first-time buyers who meet the criteria can buy a share of a property with an equity loan of up to 30% of the purchase price.

The loan, which is funded jointly by the Government and the developer, is interest free for the first five years and can be used as a deposit.

The additional A?100 million could help 8,000 first-time buyers take advantage of the scheme, which originally aimed to help 10,000 households get a foot on the property ladder.

The extension of HomeBuy Direct will also help housing developers, whose plummeting private sales have forced a shift in focus towards building for the social housing sector, albeit a less profitable area of work.

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