A national deal worth more than £400 million to help first time buyers aspiring to buy their own home was approved today by Housing Minister Margaret....
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New deal to provide affordable housing in the East of England

Posted on December 16, 2008

A national deal worth more than £400 million to help first time buyers aspiring to buy their own home was approved today by Housing Minister Margaret Beckett, as part of the Government's programme of action to tackle current difficulties in the economy. The deal means up to 1,900 first time buyers in the East of England can access affordable home ownership.

This article was published in December 2008. Please see Latest News for more recent information.

Government Office for the East of EnglandTwenty five developers have agreed to offer the HomeBuy Direct scheme which will help first time buyers purchase a home in 60 towns across the East of England aided by an equity loan, part funded by the Government and the developer. The equity loan, which will be free of charge for the first five years, can be used as a deposit and can cover up to 30 per cent of the purchase price.

This means a first-time buyer could purchase a house worth £180,000 for as little as £126,000. As with other HomeBuy schemes, any first-time buyers whose household income is under £60,000 who cannot otherwise afford to buy will be able to apply.

The scheme will also support the house building industry by identifying buyers for their new homes, helping them to weather the current difficult conditions in the market.

Eligible first time buyers will be able to apply for the scheme from early 2009 by contacting a HomeBuy agent in their region.

Housing Minister Margaret Beckett said:

"We are determined to give families real help in the current economic climate. For many young families who aspire to own a home, the difficulties in the housing market have made the step on to the property ladder that bit harder. This deal will give them more support and put their dream of becoming home owners within reach. At the same time, this scheme will also help developers to weather the tough times in the market, by protecting jobs and helping to keep business going."

HomeBuy Direct is one of a range of schemes designed to help families to get a foot on the housing ladder. We have already helped more than 110,000 people buy their own homes through shared equity and shared ownership since 1997. The Government is investing £8 billion over 3 years (2008-11) for the provision of new affordable housing for both social rent and low cost home ownership.

Source: Government Office for the East of England

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