COVID-related construction delays and Brexit red tape mean that thousands of first-time buyers could miss out on the Help to Buy loan scheme, the Times reports. Buyers hoping to use the government programme that gives a 20% interest-free loan to add to their 5% deposit have been told that their homes will not be finished by March 31st. After that date the scheme in England will become tougher with restrictions on who can use it and lower price caps on qualifying properties. Without the 20% loan many buyers will have their mortgage offers withdrawn and could lose thousands of pounds in solicitors' and brokers' fees. Last week the Builders Merchants Federation said that the construction industry was facing a damaging shortage of materials at a time of record demand from buyers before the Help to Buy deadline.
The Times (05/02/2021)