Smart first-time buyers pile into market before ending of Help to Buy

Published : 13th October 2016


First-time buyers continue to lead transactions and even the buy-to-let market is showing signs of a resurgence, Connells Survey and Valuation has claimed.

Data from September shows the number of valuations for first-time buyers rose by 18.7% on an annual basis while a pickup in buy-to-let in the past two months has seen yearly activity creep up 0.4%.

Remortgaging was also up 14.7% but valuations for established home movers contracted 2.9% on an annual basis.

Overall valuation activity was up 3.6%, the firm said.

John Bagshaw, corporate services director of Connells Survey & Valuation, suggested the first-time buyer numbers were boosted by many rightly anticipating the end of the Help to Buy mortgage guarantee scheme.

He said: “Smart first-time buyers have been anticipating the end of the Help to Buy mortgage guarantee scheme and locking into it.

“Given the Government confirmed the scheme would close this year in an announcement made at the end of September, those first-time buyers who have been jumping on the band wagon have been shown to be absolutely right.

“But we don’t expect that first-time buyer activity will fall off a cliff when Help to Buy ends. The scheme was introduced with a specific purpose – to help people get on the property ladder who were finding it hard to save for a large deposit.

“There are now more than 30 lenders offering 90-95% loans outside Help to Buy so the scheme’s not as important to the market as it was.”