If you’re a first-time property buyer, you’ve probably heard of the Government’s Help to Buy ISA scheme. Designed to help people who have never owned a home get on the property ladder, the ISA allows its beneficiaries to save up money for a deposit with the promise that the Government will boost these savings by 25% if a deal on a property is established.
Now Is The Time To Open A Help To Buy ISA
If you’ve been considering setting up a Help to Buy ISA but are yet to make the most of it, you don’t have long left to sign up. Indeed, applications to open a Help to Buy ISA are open until November 30, 2019. After this date, you will not be able to start saving with the scheme if you have not opened up an ISA.
If you opened a Help to Buy ISA before this date, you will be able to keep putting money into the scheme until November 30, 2029. Once this date has passed, you will no longer be able to channel more savings into the ISA and you will need to claim your bonus by December 1, 2030. Although the time limit may seem daunting, investing your time and effort into saving money for a Help to Buy ISA could certainly pay off in the long term, particularly if you see yourself accruing substantial savings over the coming decade.
Common Questions About Help To Buy ISAs
To help you figure out whether a Help to Buy ISA is for you, we’ve put together a couple of common questions surrounding the scheme:
How Do I Set Up A Help To Buy ISA?
Help to Buy ISAs are available from a wide range of credit unions, building societies and banks. You will need to fulfil a number of criteria before opening the ISA including:
- You must be over the age of 16
- You must be looking to buy a property that costs less than £250,000 (or £450,000 in London)
- You should not have paid any money into any other ISAs in the current tax year.
How Are Government Bonuses Claimed?
You will need a solicitor to apply for the government bonus on your behalf. Once they have received this bonus, they will add it to the sum of money you have saved towards purchasing your first home. It must be noted that the bonus should not be used to pay for estate agent or solicitor fees or any costs not directly associated with the purchase of the home.
Whilst it may seem like an extra hassle to involve a solicitor in the home buying process, it should be noted that they are often able to provide valuable advice for first time home buyers.
At Bowsers, for example, we are more than happy to help first-time buyers navigate the tricky property market and deal with any legal issues associated with it. Get in touch with us today to find out more about our service.