Help to Buy scheme gives Scots economy £1bn boost

Nicola Barclay

The number of households that have purchased a new home through the Scottish Government’s Help to Buy shared equity scheme has exceeded 10,000, according to latest figures.

The scheme, which means buyers can purchase a new home with only a 5% deposit, saw a total of 2,370 sales during 2016-17.

This takes the overall number of transactions since the introduction of Help to Buy (Scotland) in 2013 over the 10,000 mark — supporting thousands of jobs and contributing £1 billion in Gross Value Added to the economy.

Homes for Scotland chief executive Nicola Barclay said: “The fact that over 10,000 households have benefited from Help to Buy is a clear demonstration of both the scheme’s success and the aspiration of Scots to own their own home.

“The scheme is also helping to relieve pressure on the public sector with around five per cent of purchasers having moved from social rented housing and five per cent having been on a social housing waiting list.

“With current housing completions still over 36% down on pre-recession levels, Help to Buy (Scotland) has been absolutely crucial in providing confidence and certainty for customers as well as builders in terms of planning and investment decisions.

“Above all, however, these figures illustrate the vital role home building has to play not only in terms of Scotland’s social wellbeing but also its economic success.”

Housing and Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart said: “I am pleased that, along with our scheme partners, the Scottish Government has so far been able to help over 10,000 households to access an affordable new build home through Help to Buy (Scotland).

“This has helped boost the economy and it’s great to see that we’ve managed to help younger people, with half of purchasers under aged 30 or under, to support so many first time buyers and enable people to move from social housing and from waiting lists into sustainable home ownership.”