Mortgages  

Welsh gov’t to launch shared equity scheme

Ms Hutt announced a raft of major projects last week totalling more than £600m in a bid to stimulate the Welsh economy, included the Help to Buy Cymru equity loan scheme.

A Welsh government spokesman said the scheme would be up and running by the end of the year, and was currently “in discussions with housebuilders and mortgage suppliers” on its implementation.

The government will make an initial investment of £34.5m before the end of the current financial year, followed by an additional £140m between 2014/2015 and 2015/2016.

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Ms Hutt said the scheme would “not only help individuals and families to purchase a new-build home, but will increase housing supply and provide a significant boost for the construction industry in Wales”.

She added that the scheme would contribute to an investment of £800m and an estimated 5000 new homes during its duration.

However Peter Black, the Welsh Liberal Democrat spokesman for finance, criticised the Labour administration in Cardiff for the delay in launching the scheme.

He warned that the Welsh government’s inaction, compared to the English scheme, was “leaving the Welsh housing market behind”.

Background

Help to Buy, launched in England in April, gives home builders an equity loan of up to 20 per cent of the value of a new-build home which is repayable once it is sold.

The scheme is administered by the Homes and Communities Agency in England, and aims to provide up to £3.5bn of investment for up to 74,000 home builders in the three-year duration of the scheme.

The Help to Buy mortgage guarantee scheme, which gives homebuyers a government loan of up to 20 per cent of the house price for just a 5 per cent deposit, was rolled out this month, three months earlier than expected.

Adviser View

David Jones, principal of Wrexham-based North Wales Independent Advice: “I haven’t had any enquiries regarding the Help to Buy scheme yet. The real answer to the housing crisis is to build more homes. I would make it easier for self-builders to do this, but it needs a political will.”