Over 100,000 households are being helped onto the property ladder thanks to government backed schemes, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles and Housing Minister Kris Hopkins announced today (27 February 2014).
New figures show families from all areas of the housing market are becoming homeowners, whether tenants buying their home through the Right to Buy and shared ownership schemes, or people purchasing new build properties through Help to Buy.
Overall the number of homeowners who have been helped to buy or reserve a home is over 112,000 since 2010, with more sales in the pipeline.
- almost 24,000 social tenants have achieved their dream of homeownership through the Right to Buy, with the majority of sales since the government reinvigorated the scheme in 2012
- almost 41,000 households have been able to buy their home through affordable schemes, such as shared ownership
- almost 48,000 people are being helped to buy their home through Help to Buy and earlier schemes, with over 41,000 in new build homes, and the majority of those first time buyers
Ministers said such support for home buyers was also getting the country building again. Over 400,000 homes have been built since 2010, and the latest statistics reveal starts on new homes in 2013 totalled 122,590, up by 23% on the previous year, and the highest since 2007.
Eric Pickles said:
In 2010 we inherited a broken housing market, where buyers couldn’t buy, builders couldn’t build, and lenders couldn’t lend.
We’re now seeing buyers returning to the market in droves, and new homes being built across the country. Both buying and building are at their highest levels since 2007, underpinned by our action to cut the deficit and keep interest rates low. But there’s still more to do, and improving the housing market will remain a vital part of our long-term economic plan.
Cash from additional Right to Buy sales is also being recycled back into the development of new affordable homes for rent, with over 2,000 homes already in the pipeline.
The English Housing Survey published yesterday showed that more social tenants in 2012 to 2013 expected to buy the home they live in, and last year the government turned that expectation into action through the Right to Buy.
Kris Hopkins said:
Our strong support for home ownership is not merely an economic calculation, it’s because we believe in aspiration. That’s why we reinvigorated the Right to Buy, after it was slowly strangled by a miserly cap on discounts, which killed off the prospect of home ownership for most social tenants.
Strengthening the scheme has made tenants believe they can buy their home, and they are voting with their feet. But we want to go further, so that’s why we’ll soon be ensuring discounts rise with inflation, and increasing maximum discount for houses, so more social tenants can take up their Right to Buy in 2014, and we can reinvest the cash from additional sales back into delivering new affordable homes for rent.
Help to Buy
in the first 10 months of Help to Buy: equity loan there were 25,247 reservations and 14,823 completed sales on new build properties; 6,000 offers have also been made through the Help to Buy: mortgage guarantee, which is also available for new build and existing properties
the average price of a property bought under the scheme was £184,000
89% of completed sales were by first time buyers, accounting for 13,112 of total purchases
Right to Buy
the reinvigorated Right to Buy, launched April 2012, offers eligible tenants discounts of up to £75,000 off the value of their home, and up to £100,000 in London
a total of 2,845 properties were sold between October and December last year, a 42% increase on the same period in 2012, and bringing the total number of council homes sold under the reinvigorated Right to Buy to almost 14,000; councils in London accounted for 28% of quarterly sales
thousands of housing association tenants are also taking up their preserved Right to Buy - over 2,450 since April 2012, bringing the combined total sales to over 16,200
the government has been raising awareness about the Right to Buy; the English Housing Survey, published yesterday, shows that more social tenants expect to buy a home, and the proportion of those who expect to buy their current home increased from 37% in 2011 to 2012 to 44% in 2012 to 2013; this year they turned that expectation into action
Right to Buy sales since April 2012 have generated £300 million from additional sales receipts, and this is being recycled directly into providing new affordable houses for rent, with over 2,000 in the pipeline
The latest Dwelling Stock estimates statistics for England as of 31 March 2013 were published today:
- there were an estimated 23.2 million dwellings in England as at 31 March 2013, an increase of 125,000 dwellings on the previous year
- at March 2013 there were 19.1 million private dwellings (owner occupied plus private rented tenures) and 4.0 million social and affordable rented dwellings (Private Registered Providers plus local authority tenures)
- between March 2012 and March 2013 the social and affordable rented stock increased by 19,000 dwellings and the private stock increased by 93,000 dwellings