1.2m first-time buyers open Help to Buy ISAs

Since the launch of the Help to Buy ISA in 2015, 146,753 property completions have been supported by the scheme with 67% of first-time buyers being between the ages of 25 to 34, according to recent statistics from HMRC

From December 2015 when the scheme opened until the end of March 2018, there were 196,007 bonuses paid through the Help to Buy scheme, which supported 146,753 property completions. The total value of the bonuses paid in this period was £157m which were used to finance properties worth £25.3bn in total.

The mean value of a property purchased through the scheme is £172,448 compared to an average first-time buyer house price of £188,429 and a national average house price of £224,144.

According to HMRC, 67% of first-time buyers that have been supported by the scheme are between the ages of 25 to 34. The median age of a first-time buyer in the scheme is 27 compared to a median first-time buyer age across the market of 30.

Bonuses and property completions from December 2015 to March 2018, by age

AgeBonusesTotal property completionsPercentage of total bonuses
18-2444,45832,42423
25-34130,99698,09967
35-4919,78615,60810
50-647335970
65+34260
Total196,007146,753100

The highest proportion of property completions is in the North West, Yorkshire and The Humber and West Midlands, with a lower proportion in the North East and Northern Ireland.

The Help to Buy ISA was launched on 1 December 2015 with accounts available through banks, building societies and credit unions. The scheme enables people saving for their first home to receive a 25% boost to their savings from the government when they buy a property of £250,000 or less (with a higher price limit of £450,000 in London).

For every £200 saved, first-time buyers can receive a government bonus of £50 with the maximum bonus being £3,000. The scheme will be open to new savers until 30 November 2019, however account holders can continue saving into their account until 30 November 2029 when accounts will close to additional contributions. Bonus must be claimed by 1 December 2030.

As well as the Help to Buy ISA, first-time buyers can benefit from the stamp duty abolition announced in the Autumn Budget 2017 on home purchases up to £300,000. So far, 121,500 first-time buyers have saved a total of £284,000 due to stamp duty cuts.

Accountancy Daily

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