“It is of course encouraging to see that the government’s Help to Buy equity loan scheme has helped tens of thousands of first-time buyers onto the property ladder over the last three years. However, with the average purchase price of these homes over £220,000, this scheme will still only help a section of people who aspire to home ownership in the UK. A minimum cash deposit of around £11,000, which must be put up by prospective buyers purchasing an average home under this scheme, is not always within immediate reach – especially in light of soaring rental prices which are taking up more than half of young people’s salaries.
“As a country, we need to recognise that there is more than one path to home ownership and creative solutions are required to solve the housing crisis. Flexible routes such as affordable rent-to-buy models cater to a further section of aspiring home owners, who might not be in a position to buy immediately, and would benefit from the opportunity to save. In order to ensure crucial tenure options like rent-to-buy are available in future, we call on the government to include these tenures within its definition of Starter Homes as part of the new Housing and Planning Act.”