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Help to Buy scheme leads to a rise in homeowners

The Department for Communities and Local Government has released the official statistics for the past year, showing that more than 48,000 people have successfully bought a house through the Help to Buy scheme. Since it was launched last year, the number of homeowners has grown significantly, with 82 per cent of all applicants now on the property ladder. The figures suggest that the scheme has, and will, continue to benefit many regions across the UK, with the north-west having the highest number of mortgage guarantee scheme completions.In contrast, the south-east has encountered the highest number of equity loan scheme sales and a record 94 per cent of completions took place outside of London. The scheme is designed to make it as simple as possible to buy a home and requires only a five per cent deposit. A steady growth in the construction sector over the past 15 months has led to a rise in new properties being built.The rejuvenation of the housing industry following dip in the market is a noticeable positive that has followed the success of the scheme. The statistics reported the total of successful applicants grew by 23 per cent, leading to planning permissions granted for a further 216,000 homes. The Chancellor of Exchequer, George Osborne, said: "Help to Buy is working exactly as we intended. It's helping first time buyers onto the housing ladder."He went on to say: "It's a key part of our long term economic plan, which is supporting hard working people to secure a better future for their families."A core aspect of the scheme is sensible lending and it therefore targets those who need help with the mortgage process. The Chancellor announced that new mortgage guarantee loans are to be restricted to 4.5 times the borrower's income, to coincide with the introduction of a loan-to-income limit on mortgage lending by the Bank of England.  

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