Due to the demands from developers with deadlines and specific requests, buying a new build is different from purchasing other types of properties. Prospect Tree Mortgages are here to help and guide you through the process of purchasing a new build property and applying for a suitable mortgage to go with it.
What is a new-build property?
New builds are properties that are brand new and have never been lived in.
You may find properties which are almost new-builds, and are described as such by the estate agents. However, this article is focused only on houses and flats which have never been owed or occupied before.
Why buy a new build property?
There are many advantages to buying a new build property, but also some things you should be aware of before approaching a developer.
Fixtures and Fittings
Fixtures and fittings are often included as standard with new-build properties. Each developer is different and will include different items as standard. But you may get washing machines and dishwashers included and sometimes hard flooring and carpets.
Often you will find that developers try to upsell additional items which aren’t included so you should exercise caution here as you may be able to get them cheaper elsewhere. Also, extras aren’t usually additions which you can add to your mortgage, so you should discuss this with your mortgage advisor before agreeing to anything.
Up-to-date with building regulations
As technology advances and we learn more about designing and building energy-efficient and safe properties, building regulations change with it.
Buying a new build property will likely mean that your property is fully up to scratch with the latest building regulations which developers have to adhere to.
By having a property which is up-to-date with the latest building regulations, you’ll find that it runs more energy efficiently. This will help you save money on your energy bills, an issue which many homeowners are concerned about at the moment.
Mortgages for New Builds
Property developers work to demanding deadlines and once you’ve paid your deposit you will usually be expected to exchange within 28 days.
This can present a challenge as many lenders may struggle to complete your mortgage application within that time frame. The best way to get around this is to start the mortgage process as soon as possible.
You will find that mortgage lenders have stricter criteria for new build properties. One key difference is that they will require you to pay a higher deposit.
Deposits for New Builds are higher, ranging from 15-25% depending on what property you are buying and which lender you are using. However, there are Government scheme which can help.
What Government-backed schemes are available?
Help to Buy: Equity Loan
This scheme allows you to become the full owner of a property but the government will hold a share of up to 20% (40% in London), until you repay the equity loan.
This scheme helps people to buy a new-build property with a smaller deposit than usually required.
This scheme was launched in April 2021 and is for first time buyers exclusively. The scheme includes regional property price limits to ensure it reaches the people who need it the most. Initially the scheme is set to expire in March 2023.
In order to apply for this scheme you must:
- be aged 18 or older
- be a First-time Buyer
- own a home or land anywhere in the world, now or in the past
- have had any form of sharia mortgage finance
- own a home bought with other people or inherited
- be married or in a co-habiting relationship, either now or on legal completion with anyone who owns or has owned a home or land anywhere in the world
- buy a second home
First Homes is a brand new scheme which is aimed to help local First-time Buyers and Key Workers get on to the housing ladder.
This is achieved by offering homes at a discounts of 30% against their current market value and in certain areas 50%.
The discount is designed to be applied to the homes forever and is passed onto the new buyers when you sell your property.
In order to apply for the scheme:
- be a first-time buyer and have a household income not exceeding £80,000 or £90,000 in London. This amount can be lower if set by the local authority.
- post-discount price cap on first sale of property of £250,000 across England and £420,000 in London. This can be lower if decided by the local authority.
- it should be a buyers only home and a purchaser needs to use a mortgage for at least 50% of the purchase price.
- the buyer must have local connections or have a key worker status
What properties cans be bought with this scheme?
In time, more ‘First Home’ properties will become available throughout the UK. Initially 1,500 First Homes are being rolled out over the next two years across 100 locations in England.
First homes will gradually become more available as developers and local authorities begin to incorporate the new planning policies.