Home ResidentialHelp-to-buy One in 10 of UK’s biggest towns and cities have no Help To Buy homes for sale

One in 10 of UK’s biggest towns and cities have no Help To Buy homes for sale

by LLP Editor
12th Nov 21 10:58 am

One in ten of the UK’s biggest towns and cities have no homes for sale that are eligible for the Help To Buy scheme, reveals research by home setup service Just Move In.

Welsh city Swansea is the largest urban area with no HTB homes for sale, closely followed by Basildon and Rochdale. Other places with no availability include Bootle, Exmouth, Falmouth, St Helens, Halifax, Loughborough, Lancaster and King’s Lynn.

The news comes as house prices have rocketed in the past year due to people reassessing their needs during the Covid-19 pandemic.

A shortage of available homes is thought to be one of the major factors behind price increases, but the shortfall is not limited to detached family homes in rural locations – it is also affecting prospective HTB purchasers.

The number of HTB loans approved fell by a quarter (27%) from 21,102 to 15,341 between Q4 2020 and Q1 2021, the latest ONS figures reveal.

In Sutton, South London, HTB equity loans fell 78% in the same period, from 111 to 24. Torbay, Devon, and Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, fell by 76% and 73% respectively.

Camden, North London, Brighton and Havering all bucked the trend, with HTB loans increasing 233%, 225% and 182% respectively.

London has the most HTB homes available, with 1,815 properties, including 55 houses and 1,760 flats. Birmingham has 94 homes, and Bristol has 75.

Table: Top ten locations for HTB properties

Location

Homes available

Houses

Flats

London

1815

55

1760

Birmingham

94

5

89

Bristol

75

10

65

Milton Keynes

68

28

40

Watford

64

0

64

Slough

58

0

58

Doncaster

47

41

6

Stoke-on-Trent

44

44

0

Hemel Hempstead

43

4

39

Newcastle upon Tyne

42

38

4

When adjusted for local population, Watford, Hemel Hempstead and Doncaster have the highest number of HTB homes available per 100,000 people. 

Table: HTB homes for sale per 100,000 people

Location

Homes available

Population

Homes available / 100,000 people

Watford

64

140,902

45.4

Hemel Hempstead

43

101,849

42.2

Doncaster

47

114,900

40.9

Lichfield

13

33,816

38.4

Milton Keynes

68

184,105

36.9

Slough

58

164,046

35.4

Huntingdon

9

25,908

34.7

Stockton on Tees

26

84,290

30.8

Hartlepool

27

89,610

30.1

Salisbury

13

46,309

28.1

Ross Nichols, Co-founder of home setup service Just Move In, said: “Millions of people have been desperate to move and find a better way of life during the pandemic, but the plight of first-time buyers has been overlooked.

“It’s incredible to think that there are no Help To Buy properties for sale in Swansea, with nothing available for more than 240,000 residents.

“However, Swansea isn’t the only place shutting out those trying to get on the housing ladder. A tenth of the biggest towns and cities in England and Wales have nothing to offer HTB buyers.

“Unlikely as it seems, Watford gives its residents the best chance of getting hold of their first property.”

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