If you live in England and can’t afford to buy a home, you may be able to get some financial help through one of a range of Government backed home ownership schemes. If you are a "key worker" you may also qualify for help to buy a home under special schemes.


Not everyone can afford to buy a home on the open market. Recognising that most people want to become homeowners, the Government supports a number of schemes, under the umbrella of "Help to Buy", that provide first time buyers and existing home owners looking to upsize to a new property with a lower-cost way of buying a home.

An overview of Help to Buy is available from Which?

A Guide to Home Ownership Schemes is available from bankrate.com/uk.

Help-to-Buy Schemes

Help to Buy is the name given to a number of government schemes aimed at helping first-time buyers get on to the property ladder.

  • Lifetime ISA 
    You can use a Lifetime ISA (Individual Savings Account) to buy your first home or save for later life. You must be 18 or over but under 40 to open a Lifetime ISA. Full details are available at this link.

  • Equity Loan
    With a Help to Buy: Equity Loan the Government lends you up to 20% of the cost of your newly built home, so you’ll only need a 5% cash deposit and a 75% mortgage to make up the rest. Full details are available at this link.

  • Shared Ownership
    If you can’t quite afford the mortgage on 100% of a home, Help to Buy: Shared Ownership offers you the chance to buy a share of your home (between 25% and 75% of the home’s value) and pay rent on the remaining share. Later on, you could buy bigger shares when you can afford to. Full details are available at this link.
  • Mortgage Guarantee
    A mortgage supported by the Help to Buy: Mortgage Guarantee scheme works in exactly the same way as any other mortgage except that under the scheme the Government offers lenders the option to purchase a guarantee on mortgage loans. Full details are available at this link.

Further details of the Help to Buy schemes are available at GOV.UK.

If none of the above schemes are suitable you still have options available to help you buy a home. Follow this link and answer a few quick questions about yourself to find out which government-backed schemes could help you open the door to home ownership.


  • Right to Aquire
    Right to Acquire allows most housing association tenants to buy their home at a discount. Full details are available at GOV.UK.

  • Right to Buy
    Right to Buy allows most council tenants to buy their council home at a discount. Full details are available at GOV.UK and righttoBuy.gov.uk

  • Voluntary Right to Buy 
    The Voluntary Right to Buy (VRtB) is a scheme where assured tenants of housing associations will have the chance to buy their homes discounted to the same value as council tenants enjoy under the Right to Buy scheme. It is operated on a voluntary basis by housing associations and underpinned by a national agreement between the National Housing Federation and government. These discounts are being funded by the government. Full details are available at GOV.UK.

  • Preserved Right to Buy 
    Most housing association tenants do not have the Right to Buy. But if you were a secure council tenant and were living in your home when it was transferred from your council to another landlord, like a housing association, then you may have a ‘Preserved’ Right to Buy. Full details are available at righttobuy.gov.uk.
  • Social Home Buy 
    With Social HomeBuy, you may be able to buy a share of your council or housing association home and pay rent on the rest of it. Full details are available at ths link.

A complete to guide to all Government schemes for first-time home buyers and existing homeowners is available at the fowing links:

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