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Savills: make your move

The countdown is on to the end of the popular Help to Buy scheme. Vicky Dudbridge, a director in Savills residential development sales team in Bristol, explains why anyone who is thinking about buying their first home in the city would be wise to move quickly.

Up to a third of buyers of new build homes in Bristol took advantage of the Government’s Help to Buy scheme last year, according to new figures from Savills. Now, however, nine years after the initiative was first introduced, it is coming to a close.

The hugely popular scheme, which gives first time buyers the opportunity to purchase a new home with just a 5 per cent deposit, will officially end on 31 March 2023, however the reality is that Bristol buyers only have a couple of months left to take advantage.

This is because Help to Buy support can only be used on homes that are build complete by the end of this year, which limits its availability to only a few developments in Bristol. Given the typical length of time of the sales process from reservation to legal completion, we are talking about a matter of months remaining for buyers to utilise the scheme.

Help to Buy has had a huge influence on the new homes market in Bristol, helping hundreds of people take their first steps onto the property ladder that otherwise would have been out of reach.

Buying your first home can be a daunting prospect. Help to Buy has undoubtedly helped make the process more manageable for many by reducing the size of deposit needed from 10 per cent to 5 per cent. The offer of an equity loan of up to 20 per cent of a property’s value, depending on location, has also increased the pool of properties people can afford.

There is huge demand for new build property at the moment, particularly among first time buyers keen to utilise Help to Buy support, and homes are selling quickly, especially those within the most popular locations.

Paintworks IV is a prime example of such a development. Widely acknowledged as one of Bristol’s most successful regeneration developments, Paintworks has become one of the most desirable areas of the city in which to live. Paintworks IV is the latest and final phase, completing the community with a collection of new apartments and retail spaces. It has proved incredibly popular, and over half of the apartments have already sold off-plan, leaving just a selection of two bedroom apartments still available for sale.

The remaining apartments are situated within two beautifully-designed buildings set on an attractive courtyard, which will also be home to a number of new restaurants and cafes. The apartments have been designed to provide contemporary open plan living and finished to a high standard. Each one has allocated parking and some have a private balcony.

The apartments will be ready to move into from the autumn. Prices on those remaining for sale start at £335,000 and, if you are a first time buyer using Help to Buy support, you can purchase with a 5 per cent deposit, which could be as little as £16,750.

With the clock ticking on Help to Buy availability, anyone who is thinking about getting onto the property ladder within the next year is advised to start looking now to avoid missing out.

Savills specialist residential development sales team in Bristol markets new build developments and conversions across the city and its surrounding areas. For more information, contact the team on +44 (0) 0117 910 0360 or vicky.dudbridge@savills.com.