Help To Buy

Started in 2013, Help to Buy (Scotland) is a Scottish Government scheme which helps people buy new build homes from participating builders.  The Scottish Government announced that part of the scheme, the ‘Affordable New Build Scheme’ would close to new applications on 5th Feb 2021.  The ‘Smaller Developer Scheme’ has been allocated additional funding for 2021/22, and will be accepting applications until all of the funding has been allocated.  New Builders will be able to advise if they are able to offer a property on the ‘Smaller Developer Scheme’

Although each individual case is different, generally if you can raise a deposit of around 5% and secure a mortgage for around 80% of the price of a new build property, the government will put up the remaining 15% and take an equity share in the property. The total amount the government will put up is dependent on your circumstances.

Although you can repay the government at any time, the government will only ask for the money back when you come to sell the property.

There is no interest payable on money secured through Help to Buy (Scotland), but assuming your property value rises, then so will the value of the stake the government holds in it – and this will be reflected in the amount of money they receive once it is sold.

If your property has fallen in value when you come to sell, the government investment will go down in line with your own.

There are a number of rules of Help to Buy (Scotland), including:

  • Help to Buy (Scotland) is only available on new build homes from participating builders
  • Help to Buy (Scotland) is only available on properties up to a maximum value of £200,000

You can read a summary of all of the criteria at

There is a limited amount of funds available each year for Help to Buy (Scotland).

The scheme will remain open for business in each year as long as funds are available – so it is very much a first come, first served basis.


What is ‘Help to Buy (Scotland)’?
Help To Buy (Scotland) can give you up to 15% of the purchase price of a newly built residential property through a ‘shared equity’ scheme.   This means the Government would own a stake in your property.  You would have to repay the government if and when you sold the property.  The repayment will be 15% of the sale price NOT the purchase price.    Help to Buy (Scotland) is applicable to properties costing up to £200,000.
What is a ‘Help To Buy ISA’?
For a number of years, the Scottish government supported the “Help To Buy ISA” scheme where it would match a proportion of savings made into a special bank account.  The scheme closed to new applicants in 2019, although existing Help to Buy ISA holders can still save through the scheme.  Wallace Quinn are licensed solicitors for this scheme.
Who is eligible for Help To Buy (Scotland)?
You could be eligible for Help To Buy if the property will be your main and only residence.  Help To Buy is only available on new-build property and only selected builders are included in the scheme.  You cannot part exchange a property using Help To Buy.  You would still need to ensure you have a deposit of at least 5% of the full purchase price.
What is the ‘First Home Fund’
Introduced in 2020, the ‘First Home Fund’ is a shared equity scheme offering up to £25,000 towards the purchase price of a property.  Unlike “Help To Buy (Scotland)”, this scheme is available to both new build and resale residential property and there is no upper limit on the purchase price of the property.  This scheme is only available to people who have never owned property anywhere in the world at any time in the past.
What is a ‘Lifetime ISA (LISA)’?
A Lifetime ISA is a savings account open to anybody aged between 18 and 40.  You can save up to £4,000 per year until you are 50.  The government will add a 25% bonus to your savings, up to a maximum of £1,000 per year.   You can withdraw the money to buy your first home or for any other reason if you are aged 60 or older.  You can also withdraw the money if you are terminally ill, with less than twelve months to live.  Withdrawing the money for any other reason will incur a 25% charge.
I would like to find out more about these schemes, what should I do next?
The information contained in this document on the government schemes are for illustrative purposes and the information may change, therefore should not be used to make decisions on whether they are right for you – to do that, you should discuss these schemes with your Independent Financial Advisors.

Want more information?

When you purchase property, a process known as conveyancing, there are various costs involved.  The conveyancing fee is what Wallace Quinn will charge you for our services.  There are also outlays and taxes imposed by government which we will collect and pay on your behalf.  If you would like an instant online quote for all fees, outlays and taxes, try our New Build Conveyancing Calculator.