UK Help to Buy Scheme Redemption and Impact on Relocation
Posted by: Liam Robson, Director UK Account Management
The UK Help to Buy scheme was introduced by the government in 2013 to support those who were finding it difficult to save enough money for a mortgage deposit. The scheme offers homebuyers a loan of up to 95% of the property’s value (as long as it costs less than £600,000). For relocating employees, selling a UK Help to Buy property can be a complex process, known as ‘repayment/redemption through selling’. This process can raise a number of challenges for the moving employee and the company relocating them. Our latest Mobility Insights discusses this process, including the possible impact on UK relocation.
The Help to Buy Repayment Process
Once a relocating employee receives an acceptable offer on his or her property, MyFirstHomes (the government service set up to help people through the selling process) requires an independent valuation. And this valuation must be conducted by a qualified member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). If MyFirstHomes is not satisfied with the valuation, it can request that another one is done. As valuations are only valid for three months, if the transaction is not completed within this time, another one will be needed. As it’s down to the seller to pay for all independent valuations, companies relocating impacted employees may need to consider these additional costs as part of their relocation programme.
What is the Impact on Relocation?
The complexity of this process, when compared to a ‘traditional’ house sale, means that relocation start dates may be delayed. So companies should allow for extra time when scheduling assignments that include employees selling a Help to Buy property, demonstrating flexibility where possible.
Also, consider the additional cost of relocating an employee who has to sell a Help to Buy property. Valuations only last for three months, so if a transaction hasn’t been completed within that time, another valuation must be paid for.