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TO BUY OR NOT TO BUY? THE UK’S TOP HELP-TO-BUY HOTSPOTS REVEALED

  • Central Bedfordshire is the top district to purchase a property through help-to-buy schemes in the UK
  • Of the UK’s largest cities, Wakefield found to be the number one help-to-buy hotspot, beating out larger cities
  • West Sussex named the best region in the UK to purchase a property through help-to-buy

Entering the property market has become an increasingly daunting task for many young people in today’s economic climate. As a result, many have looked to government-backed help in the form of help-to-buy schemes and ISAs to turn the dream of joining the property ladder into a reality. Through the government’s Help-to-Buy scheme, buyers can receive an equity loan of up to 20% (or 40% in London boroughs) of the house’s total value, making it possible to purchase a home with just a 5% deposit. The required deposit can then be saved with the help of high-interest ISAs.

Though purchasing through help-to-buy has become an increasingly feasible option, not all areas of the UK have equal opportunity. Credit experts TotallyMoney have investigated Britain’s best and worst districts, cities and regions to lay down roots utilising help-to-buy schemes.

We researched a number of factors in each district across the UK to determine a ranking, including the number of equity loans utilised in each region (per capita), the number of help-to-buy ISA property completions and the average amount left to pay after government help (based on average property prices). The research uses government data to compare every district of the UK, including Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, to generate the complete ordered list of help-to-buy hotspots.

Desirable Districts

Considering the ranking factors mentioned above, of the 388 government-defined regions in the UK, the top help-to buy hotspots were revealed to be:

1. Central Bedfordshire – The Eastern district came up trumps, with a high level of equity loans (1710) per capita, and 245 properties successfully bought using a help-to-buy ISA. The district beat out all competitors as the best place to purchase a property utilising help-to-buy in the UK.

2. Chorley – The Lancashire market town came in second position with a low average property cost (£182,818) making entering the property ladder through help-to-buy schemes more achievable. The district also boasts the lowest average minimum deposit from the top 5 districts (£9,141) and relatively high number of equity loans given out by the government per capita making property ownership more achievable for residents.

3. Cheshire West and Cheshire – The second area in the North West to appear among the top scoring districts, Cheshire West and Cheshire scored particularly highly in terms of the number of help-to-buy ISA property completions per capita where it came out top in the whole of the UK, with 495 residents purchasing homes utilising this scheme.

Help-To-Buy Cities

The research also accounts for the most populated UK cities and which of those offer the best options for buyers looking to utilise help-to-buy options. Of these, the most buyer-friendly cities were revealed to be:

1. Wakefield – Located in a prime spot between Leeds and York, Wakefield tops the UK’s most populated cities for help-to-buy hotspots. The city has one of the highest levels of help-to-buy ISA property completions, helping 610 residents purchase new homes between December 2015 and March 2017.

2. Hull – In second place, and securing Yorkshire as a true hotspot hotshot, the port city scored highly in equity loans per capita. Hull’s low average property cost (£134,452) means that the 5% deposit required is the cheapest of any city at just £6,722.

3. Salford – Home to MediaCityUK, Salford sits in bronze position with 437 residents successfully purchasing homes utilising the help-to-buy ISAs in recent times and a good level of equity loans per capita boosting its ranking.

Joe Gardiner, Head of Brand and Communications at TotallyMoney, said, “Today, entering the property ladder is increasingly being seen as a pipedream for many young people. But with the introduction of government help-to-buy schemes, this dream can become a realistic option. For those thinking of utilising these schemes, knowing where in the UK is the most help-to-buy friendly, and whether your local area is one of these hotspots, is of particular importance to allow buyers to make a responsible financial decision. ”

The full ranked map of the UK’s help-to-buy hotspots can be explored here, or the infographic covering the best help-to-buy cities can be viewed here.