Help to Buy: ISA

Trying to save money to buy your first home? Receive a government bonus of up to £3,000 by investing a Help to Buy: ISA (what is an ISA?). For every pound you save, the Government will pay an extra 25% bonus on top.

You can open a Help to Buy: ISA at a number of banks, building societies and credit unions. Simply make a deposit of up to £1,200 in your first month to get started, followed by monthly deposits of up to £200. You need save at least £1600 before you can claim the minimum government bonus of £400. To receive the maximum government bonus of £3,000 you must have saved at least £12,000.

Each account is only available to individuals, so if you are planning to purchase a new property with your partner, your combined bonuses could be worth up to £6,000. The amount you save every month is at your discretion, as long as you don’t exceed the maximum deposit of £200. This allowance does not roll over into following months – for example, if you don’t make any payments in March and April, you still cannot make a payment of £600 in May.

To qualify for a Help to Buy: ISA you must:

To qualify for the government bonus, the property you are buying must:

  • be a UK resident
  • be aged 16 years or over
  • have a valid National Insurance number
  • be a first time home buyer; someone who has never owned a home anywhere in the UK or any other country, and
  • ·not have another active cash ISA in the same tax year.
  • be located within the UK
  • cost less than £250,000 (or £450,000 in London)
  • be the only home you plan to own
  • be purchased with a mortgage, and
  • be the only property where you plan to live.

The bonus will be paid once the Government is certain the home purchase will go ahead, therefore your solicitor or conveyancer must claim the bonus between exchange and completion. They cannot charge more than £50+VAT to process this transaction.

You can only have one Help to Buy: ISA at any one time, however you are permitted to transfer your account between ISA managers such as banks, building societies and credit unions. Help to Buy: ISAs will be available to open until 30 November 2019. You can continue to save into your account until 30 November 2029 and your bonus must be claimed by 1 December 2030. If you choose to close your account before this date your bonus must be claimed within 12 months. We strongly recommend not closing your account until you are confident you are about to buy your first home.

For more information, please visit the Help to Buy website.