Do you want to buy a home?
Affordable Home Ownership Options
Help to Buy
The Government created a range of Help to Buy products to assist those who otherwise wouldn't be able to get a foot on or up the housing ladder.
Whether you are looking to get onto the housing ladder or move up it, there are a number of Help to Buy products designed to make buying a home more affordable, including:
How does it work?
If outright purchase is not an option for you, this scheme offers an alternative to renting. You can buy an initial share in a new home that you can afford, helping you into home ownership in manageable stages.
This scheme has previously been known as “Part Buy, Part Rent”, and both new-build and re-sale (older) properties are available.
The Housing Association or Registered Provider will offer initial shares of between 25% - 75% of the full purchase price. You pay a subsidised rent on the remaining share that the Housing Association or Registered Provider still own. The combined monthly cost of mortgage and rent will normally be less than if you were purchasing the property outright.
In the future you can simply sell your share for its value at the time or alternatively you can purchase further shares in your home.
With most properties you are eventually able to own the property outright if you wish to, although there are some restrictions on rural schemes.
Am I eligible?
- Your annual household income can be no more than £80,000.
- You should be unable to purchase a home suitable for your needs without assistance.
- You cannot be a current home owner (or be named on the deeds of another property).
- You must not have any outstanding credit issues (i.e. unsatisfied defaults or county court judgements).
To apply online, please visit: www.helptobuyese.org.uk/help-to-buy
Help to Buy - Equity Loans
How does it work?
The Government lends you between 10% and 20% of the cost of your new-build home, so that you’ll only need a 5% cash deposit and 75% mortgage to make up the rest.
You will not be charged loan fees on the 20% loan for the first five years of owning your home.
The loan is paid back either at the end of the mortgage term, or when the property is sold.
We recommend that you read the full Help to Buy Equity Loan Buyers Guide, produced by the government’s Homes and Communities Agency.
Am I eligible?
- The scheme is open to both first time buyers and existing home owners**.
- There is no maximum household income.
- You can purchase a property with a maximum value of £600,000.
- You will need a minimum 5% deposit to qualify.
- The maximum age is 75 years of age - as this impacts the mortgage.
**Home owners can reserve a new build property as long as their existing property has sold before completing on the new property.
Please visit www.helptobuyese.org.uk/help-to-buy/help-to-buy-equity-loans for further information on how to apply.
New Help to Buy scheme announced
The Government has announced a new Help to Buy scheme to run from April 2021. It is restricted to first-time buyers and includes regional property price caps to ensure the scheme reaches the people who need it most. There are no changes to the current Help to Buy equity loan scheme which runs to March 2021.
The new scheme will run from April 2021 to March 2023. As with the current scheme, under the new scheme, the government will lend buyers up to 20% of the cost of a newly built home, and up to 40% in London.
Read more about this on www.gov.uk/government/news/budget-to-support-new-housing-high-streets-and-local-services
Already a tenant of a local authority?
If you are already a tenant of a local authority then you may be able to buy your own home under the Right to Buy. Check with your landlord for more information. If you are a tenant of Dartford Borough Council you can find out more information on the Right to Buy web page.
Key steps to buying a home:
If you are able to raise a full mortgage yourself then your first step should be to visit the local banks and building societies of Dartford.
Try www.yell.com for listings of local establishments who will assess your finances and give you an indication of how much you will be able to borrow. Most prospective buyers will at this stage have at least a minimum deposit of 10% to put towards the house purchase.
Once you have this information you are ready for the fun part of viewing available properties.
To be kept abreast of all available properties, it would be prudent to register with all estate agents based in Dartford. They are all very keen to make a sale and will keep you informed of properties matching your requirements as they arise.
- Their details can be found on the website of The National Association of Estate Agents (www.naea.co.uk)
- Check the local newspapers property section and websites like www.rightmove.co.uk which have most estate agents properties available to view online
Once you have found a property that you wish to purchase, you will need to instruct a solicitor to proceed with a sale. The solicitor will instruct local land searches, check planning applications, environmental reports and issues with deeds relevant to the property.
Local solicitors can be found on www.yell.com or as recommended by your estate agent.
View more information on local land charges and searches.
The mortgage lender will also instruct a surveyor to carry out an inspection of the property to ensure that the money that is being lent is going towards a good investment.
The surveyors report (depending on the depth) will highlight any areas of concern and make suggestions for improvement. Some suggestions the mortgage lender may insist are carried out before purchase as they may affect the value of the property.
The cost of these improvements are normally negotiated between the seller and the buyer to achieve a satisfactory arrangement.
Unfortunately, not all house purchases proceed as hoped and there are many reasons why a potential purchase may fail. You may be refused a mortgage due to insufficient borrowing capacity, the survey carried out on the house may reveal unsatisfactory defects, a buyer/seller may 'pull out' of the sale....the list is endless.
It pays to be aware of the pitfalls concerning house purchase to avoid potential disappointment further down the line.
Between your lender and your solicitor, the sale will then progress to 'exchange' where all the contracts concerning the sale/s are passed to all parties involved, checked for accuracy and signed for acceptance.
Normally around a week separates the 'exchange' from the 'completion', where you pack up your belongings, pick up your keys and move into your new house!