Scotland’s ruling party the SNP has announced at its annual party conference in Edinburgh that it is to offer first time buyers simple cash loans via a new Help to Buy scheme.
The country’s existing Help to Buy schemes are similar to those offered in England and Wales and offer equity loans and new-build specific packages. The new scheme is expected to fund up to 6,000 house additional purchases over the next two years.
In total £150 million is being made available to first time buyers, who will be able to access loans of up to £25,000 to buy a property. Applicants who can save up 5% of a property’s value will then be given access to the loans and be able to spend it on buying both new and resale properties.
The scheme will also be open to couples even if one of them has previously bought a property. The loans will be secured on future equity within the property and repaid only when it is sold.
“For too many, the simple truth is that, even on decent incomes, saving for a deposit takes so long it has become a distant dream,” said SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon (left).
“Many are even paying more in rent than they would pay for a mortgage and don’t have the money left at the end of the month to save for a deposit. In a fair and equitable country that cannot stand.”