H2B1 drastically cuts average deposits

The average homebuyer seeking a mortgage put up a deposit of £61,325 during March. In contrast, equity loan applicants put forward £50,261 including the government loan as well as their own contribution.

By taking out the maximum 20% equity loan to support the average purchase (£187,760), it left borrowers who use the government scheme needing just £13,031 in upfront capital for their deposit.

This amounts to less than half (41%) of their typical annual income or just over six months’ take-home pay.

In contrast, the average homebuyer’s deposit across the whole mortgage market adds up to more than a year and a half’s income (158%): equivalent to over two years’ take-home pay.

Both the average income and average deposit (including government contribution) put forward by equity loan applicants during March were 18% lower than for the average homebuyer seeking a mortgage.

Typical applicants for equity loans were almost five years younger (32.4 years vs. 37.3 years), showing how the scheme continues to reach out to a younger demographic and broaden access to the housing market.

Andy Frankish, new homes director at Mortgage Advice Bureau, said: “Help to Buy equity loans have been instrumental in helping those who cannot afford a hefty deposit to buy their own home by encouraging them to explore the new build market.

“While initial critics bemoaned the scheme’s £600,000 upper limit, the typical purchase is for a home worth less than a third of this. The positives of the scheme far outweigh any impact on house price inflation.

“Part one of Help to Buy has a clear remit to broaden access at the lower end of the property ladder to younger buyers, and the scheme is clearly delivering this aim.

“At the same time, it is stimulating construction by coaxing smaller regional builders back to the market, as well as prompting the big developers to ramp up their output.”