Budget 2015: Osborne unveils Help to Buy ISA plans

George Osborne delivers budget in 2014
In the 2015 Budget, the Chancellor pledged that for every £200 homebuyers save for a deposit the government will top it up with £50.

“It’s as simple as this – we’ll work hand-in-hand to help you buy your first home,” said Osborne.

For every £200 a first-time buyer saves the government will provide a £50 bonus up to a maximum bonus of £3,000 on £12,000 of savings.

The bonus will be applied to each person who has saved into the ISA at the point they use their savings to purchase their first home.

Accounts are limited to one per person rather than one per home so those buying together can both receive a bonus.

The tax-free government bonus will help people saving up to buy a first home worth up to £450,000 in London or £250,000 anywhere else in the UK.

Accounts can be opened for a period of four years from the start date of the scheme and applicants must be a minimum of 16-years-old to open an account.

Savers will have access to their own money and will be able to withdraw funds from their account if they need them for another purpose but the bonus will only be made available for home purchase.

“A 25% top-up is equivalent to saving for a deposit from your pre-tax income – it’s effectively a tax cut for first-time buyers,” Osborne said in his speech.
The government said it would work with the industry to make the savings account ready for the autumn.

Mark Harris, chief executive of mortgage broker SPF Private Clients, said: “The Help to Buy ISA is a great idea.

“It encourages people to save which is a far better way of tackling the issue of high house prices than increasing loan-to-values. Getting a big enough deposit is a problem in London and the South-East but less of an issue in the rest of the country.”

Source Mortgage Solutions