Help to Buy deadline extended to February

On 31 July the UK government announced that the Help to Buy build deadline been extended to 28
February 2021.

The move extends the current deadline for homes to have been finished to comply with the equity
loan scheme by three months, having previously been 31 December 2020. However, the deadline
for legal completion within the scheme remains 31 March 2021.

The extension of the build deadline should enable thousands of customers to take advantage of Help
to Buy where they may have missed out due to building delays brought about by the pandemic.
However, there will be no changes to the new Help to Buy scheme coming into place from 1 April
2021. The new scheme will still introduce property price caps and is restricted to first-time buyers
only, running until March 2023.

Since the start of the current scheme in 2013, Help to Buy has helped more than a quarter of a
million people to buy a home, with over 270,000 property sales completed.
Housing Minister Rt Hon Christopher Pincher had this to say:

“Today’s announcement will help provide certainty and assurance for Help to Buy customers whose
new homes have been delayed due to coronavirus and affirms the government’s commitment to
helping more people to own their own home.”

Further to the announcement, Homes England, a governmental housing accelerator, will work
specifically with customers who had a reservation in place before 30 June to assess their situation,
and where necessary, provide an extension to 31 May 2021 for them to legally complete.

According to Which?, first-time buyers account for roughly 80% of property purchases, and with the
Help to Buy scheme popular with this demographic, the recent announcement could provide a huge
boost for those looking to take their first step onto the property ladder.

It remains to be seen whether the build deadline could be extended further if COVID-19 makes an
unwanted resurgence.

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