Nearly All House Sales Could Qualify For Help To Buy

Date Published 25 March 2013

According to Rightmove, 97% of new-build homes currently listed by developers and 93% of resale homes listed by estate agents have an asking price of £600,000 or below.

The £600,000 figure is the ceiling for both the taxpayer-backed mortgage indemnity scheme available on both new and secondhand properties, and also for the shared equity scheme on new properties.

Rightmove director Miles Shipside said: `The willingness of lenders to implement the scheme for existing homes is critical for it to fulfil its potential, and the cost of the indemnity fee must not be a deterrent.

`Tough credit score criteria will still be a hurdle at which many fall, with lenders likely to use it as a filter to control the number of applicants.`

He added: `There is obviously some detail to be worked out which is delaying the start of the Help to Buy scheme for existing homes, but this represents an immediate shot in the arm for the new-build industry.

`It also effectively gives them an exclusivity period of nine months over existing homes that will give them an upper hand in wrestling buyers away from the resale market into their brand new offerings till the start of 2014.`

Over the last three years Rightmove said its research has consistently shown that raising enough of a deposit is the single biggest concern cited by those looking to get on, or trade up from, the bottom rungs of the housing ladder.

Rightmove said it will be happy to back the Help to Buy initiatives by promoting it to the nation’s home-movers once full details have been clarified.