Hundreds in Northumberland cash in on house buying scheme

Hundreds of first-time buyers in Northumberland bought a home through the Government's Help to Buy equity loan scheme last year, new figures reveal.

Wednesday, 1st September 2021, 3:26 pm
New homes scheme figures

Housing campaigners claim the scheme is a “sticking a plaster” on the failure to build enough homes.

The scheme allowed buyers to borrow up to 20% of the value of a new build home provided they paid at least a five per cent deposit.

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government data shows 382 loans were given to first-time buyers in Northumberland using the scheme in the year to March – 61 more than the previous year.

They were among 476 households in the area which used the scheme - with loans amounting to £21.6m in total.

Nationally, £4bn in Help to Buy loans were handed out in 2020-21, with more than 55,600 homes sold.

But Priced Out, which campaigns for affordable house prices, said the fact so many people have to borrow money to buy their first home shows a “failure” to control house price inflation.

Anya Martin, director, said: “Prices have risen faster than incomes for decades - because we have failed to meet higher demand with higher supply.

“The Government is not doing enough to ensure more people can buy their first home. Instead of allowing more homes to be built, they keep pumping up the market with more cash.”

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said: “Help to Buy is helping young people and first-time buyers feel the sense of pride and achievement that comes with owning your own home.”