2. Help to Buy: equity loans

Equity loans are open to both first-time buyers and home movers on new-build homes in England with a purchase price up to £600,000.

You won’t be able to sub-let your home if you use this scheme. It must also be your only property.

How it works

With an equity loan:

  • you’ll need to contribute at least 5% of the property price as a deposit
  • the government will give you a loan for up to 20% of the price
  • you’ll need a mortgage of up to 75% to cover the rest

Example

For a property worth £200,000 Amount Percentage
Cash deposit £10,000 5%
Equity loan £40,000 20%
Your mortgage £150,000 75%

Equity loan fees

You won’t be charged loan fees for the first 5 years of owning your home.

In the sixth year, you’ll be charged a fee of 1.75% of the loan’s value. After this, the fee will increase every year. The increase is worked out by using the Retail Prices Index plus 1%.

Your Help to Buy agent will contact you before the fees start, to set up monthly payments with your bank. You’ll also be sent a statement about your loan each year.

Fees don’t count towards paying back the equity loan.

Applying for an equity loan

Contact the Help to Buy agent in the area where you want to live if you’d like to buy a home with an equity loan.

You must buy your home from a registered Help to Buy builder. Your Help to Buy agent should have a list of registered builders for you to choose from.

Selling your home and paying back the loan

You must pay back the loan after 25 years or when you sell your home - whichever is earliest. How much you pay back will depend on the market value at that time.

Example

Market value of your home Equity loan taken out Amount
Bought for £200,000 20% Borrowed £40,000
Sold for £250,000 20% Pay back £50,000

You can pay back part or all of your loan at any time. The minimum percentage you can pay back is 10% of the market value of your home. The amount you pay will depend on the market value at that time.

Example

Market value of your home Percentage Amount
Bought for £200,000 Borrowed 20% Borrowed £40,000
Value at time of payment £220,000 Paying back 10% Pay back £22,000

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