Here we explain how the new mortgage guarantee scheme works.
The Government scheme, launched on the 19th April, aims to help increase the number of mortgage deals available to buyers with as little as 5% to put down. The Government will provide lenders with a guarantee on the mortgages offered, which means that it will cover some of the lender’s losses if the borrower defaults on the mortgage within the first 7 years of buying their home.
What is the mortgage guarantee scheme?
This should encourage lenders to develop mortgages for borrowers with small deposits, improving the range of options on the market.
The Government’s view is that the lack of low-deposit mortgages is largely a response to the pandemic rather than a longer term issue within the mortgage market, and the scheme is therefore intended as a temporary measure. It will be open for new applications until December 2022.
For mortgages covered by the guarantee scheme, the Government has applied some criteria limits that lenders must adhere to:
Am I eligible for a 95% mortgage?
- The scheme is available to first time buyers and home movers buying a main residential property up to the value of £600,000. It isn’t available for Buy to Let or second homes.
- The mortgage must be taken on a repayment basis
Every lender will carry out an affordability assessment as normal, taking into account your income and outgoings to determine how much you can borrow. Affordability calculations can vary from lender to lender, but the scheme has set a maximum borrowing level of 4.5 times your household income.
Every lender has its own set of criteria, so specific restrictions can vary. Currently many lenders will already have limits that apply to new build houses and flats and so are not allowing 95% mortgages under the guarantee scheme to be used to buy new-build properties.
Can I use the scheme to buy any property?
No. While several lenders have chosen to take part in the mortgage guarantee scheme, many have already launched 95% LTV mortgage deals outside of this initiative.
Are all 95% deals part of the scheme?
Whether a lender takes part in the scheme or not will have little bearing on you as a borrower.
There are also a number of other Government initiatives available for first time buyers, including the Help to Buy Equity Loan. You can read more about these schemes here.
The bigger the deposit you can save, the wider the range of mortgage options you’ll be able to choose from.
Should I buy now or keep saving?
Lenders typically offer their most competitive rates to those with a larger deposit, so the more you can afford to put down, the lower your rate should be, and the less interest you’ll pay overall.
It will also depend on the amount you can borrow and whether that in conjunction with the deposit will be enough to meet the required purchase price .