BBC first-time buyers ISA report: Aster Group comment

BBC Report showing first-time buyers priced out of the new ISA underlines urgent need to build more homes – and make them affordable, says Aster housing chief

This week’s BBC report suggesting that many aspiring homeowners are ‘priced out’ of the new Help to Buy ISA further demonstrates the urgent need for more new homes which people can actually afford, says new home developer Aster Group.

The Help to Buy ISA was introduced last year to help first-time buyers save for a home with the chance to get a 25 per cent boost on their savings (up to £3,000) from the Government. But research by the BBC has found that in many parts of the country, the average starter home price exceeds the maximum purchase price - £250,000 or £450,000 in London – at which the Help to Buy ISA bonus is available.

Responding to the BBC report, Bjorn Howard, Aster’s chief executive says: “This report shows that the lack of new homes aimed at people starting out on the housing ladder is pushing up prices and putting properties which should be ideal for first-time purchasers out of their reach. It further underlines the urgent need for increased investment in homes which people can actually afford.

“Through shared ownership, purchasers can buy as low as a 25 per cent share of their home and increase this share over a period time, giving many people the opportunity to get their first step on the housing ladder.

”Lack of housing supply is also serious barrier to would-be homeowners, which is why we’re putting significant investment into our own new-build housing programme with plans to develop 9,500 homes over the next seven years, the majority of which will be for shared ownership.”