Has Help to Buy been a hin­drance?

The Daily Telegraph - Property - - Front Page -

The feel-good fac­tor af­ter the 2012 Lon­don Olympics masked the fact that the UK was still reel­ing from the global fi­nan­cial cri­sis. Wage growth was non-ex­is­tent and the num­ber of peo­ple buy­ing homes plum­meted to half the usual level.

House prices across most of the coun­try were flat or in de­cline, and the con­struc­tion in­dus­try de­pleted as skilled work­ers changed trade. A big-name house­builder teetered on the brink.

The fol­low­ing April the Gov­ern­ment stepped in with its flag­ship hous­ing pol­icy, Help to Buy.

The shared eq­uity scheme has courted crit­i­cism, of­ten ac­cused of in­flat­ing prop­erty prices and lin­ing the pock­ets of house­builders.

But five years on, could we have done with­out it? veal that the scheme has helped a to­tal of 117,000 first-time buy­ers get a foot on the prop­erty lad­der up to Septem­ber 2017.

For Kayne Cross and Char­lotte Lyn­dall it’s a man­age­able price to pay. They have just moved into their first home in Water­side at Monksmoor Park, near Daven­try, Northamp­ton­shire. The cou­ple pur­chased a four-bed­room house for £319,500 us­ing Help to Buy and put down a five per cent de­posit.

“We had been liv­ing in a shared own­er­ship home in Rugby, but found the rent and mort­gage charges to­gether were too high,” says Cross, 28.

The ma­chine op­er­a­tor spot­ted the Crest Ni­chol­son de­vel­op­ment when it was un­der con­struc­tion, at­tracted by the high-pitched roofs, white ren­der and greyframed win­dows.

“The Help to Buy scheme was a huge help to us and made own­ing our own home pos­si­ble,” he adds.

Prices start from £259,000 for a three-bed­room house and the site is sur­rounded by coun­try­side. Crest Ni­chol­son’s Monksmoor Park es­tate sits along­side the Grand Canal with Daven­try Coun­try Park to the south.

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