HCA approves aid package for NW first-time buyers

Thirty five developers have agreed to offer the Government's new £400m HomeBuy Direct scheme which will help first-time buyers in 80 areas of the North West.

Developers signed up to the state aid scheme include Urban Splash, Ask, Artisan, ING, Isis, Taylor Wimpey and Persimmon.

The scheme offers equity loans, paid for by the Government and the developer, which will be free of charge for the first five years and can be used as a deposit worth up to 30% of the purchase price. The scheme is open to first-time buyers whose household income is under £60,000 and who cannot otherwise afford to buy.

The deal means up to 2,200 first time buyers in the North West can access affordable home ownership, the Government said. The Homes & Communities Agency has approved more than 18,000 properties for inclusion in the scheme across the country.

Eligible first time buyers will be able to apply for the scheme from early 2009 by contacting a HomeBuy agent in their region. HomeBuy Direct was first announced in September 2008.

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