Help to Buy deadline extended amid Covid delays
A deadline to buy a home under the current Help to Buy scheme in England has been extended to the end of May.
Covid-related delays meant more than 16,000 sales were at risk, with buyers facing large bills were purchases to fall through at the last minute.
Construction of newly-built homes, which qualify for the scheme, have been put back by as much as eight months.
Some buyers are worried that the new, two-month extended deadline will still come too soon.
In seven years, the Help to Buy equity loan scheme has allowed 278,000 households to receive an advance from the government to help pay the deposit to buy a newly-built home.
The Help to Buy scheme, in its current form, is coming to an end in England and is being replaced by a less generous version restricted to first-time buyers which starts for new applicants at the beginning in April.
In many cases, construction workers have needed to self-isolate, supply lines have slowed, overseas labour may have needed to quarantine, and some traders have been furloughed.
Buyers face losing thousands of pounds if their properties are not built in time.
The government's extension to the deadline - the latest of three - gives homebuilders an extra two months to complete developments. It means that purchases can be completed by the end of May.
"This measure provides certainty to developers to build out homes delayed and further protects customers whose purchases have been delayed by Covid-19," a spokesman for Homes England said.
He added the move was aimed to ensure "those buying a home through the scheme are not disadvantaged by circumstances beyond their control".
Posted on Feb 15, 2021.
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