Starter Home discount for first-time buyers

Starter Home discount for first-time buyers

New government scheme offers discounts on new homes.

Anna Jordan

Mortgages and Bills

Anna Jordan
Updated on 17 December 2014

Around 100,000 first-time homebuyers under the age of 40 will be offered a 20% discount off the price of their first home under a new government scheme called the Starter Home Initiative.

The discount will be offered on new homes which will be built over the next five years.

How it will work

The government wants to change the planning system so that underused or unviable brownfield land, previously used for industrial and commercial purposes, will be free from planning costs and levies. At the moment builders can face an average bill of £15,000 per home. 

Clearing these obligations will make it cheaper for them to build the homes. And to ensure those savings are then passed onto the buyer, the homes cannot be resold at market value for a fixed period. 

House builders would be exempt from contributions under section 106 in order to make it easier to release brownfield sites. These taxes and levies cost an average of £15,000 a home and the savings can be passed on to the buyer.

[Related story: Huge drop in property asking prices]

What happens next?

The proposals are now subject to an eight-week consultation period.

Prospective buyers will be able to register their details on a new website from next month, putting them on a list of people waiting for homes under the Starter Home initiative.

In the meantime, councils and house builders are being encouraged to contribute to the consultation and show their support for the initiative.

So far seven councils are on board including the London Borough of Bexley, South Holland District Council and Sevenoaks District Council. 30 house builders have also pledged their support.

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