First-time buyers in Fareham set to benefit from scheme for discounted homes

Affordable homes could be sold at a discounted price for first-time buyers in Fareham.

By Toby Paine
Tuesday, 4th January 2022, 12:01 pm
Updated Tuesday, 4th January 2022, 12:04 pm

Fareham Borough Council is proposing an interim first homes policy designed to help people get onto the property ladder who are unable to afford homes at market value.

The scheme will ensure the sale of a property will be discounted by 30 per cent against the market value.

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House-building

After the discount is applied the initial sale of the house must not exceed £250,000 - the scheme also ensures the discount will remain for future buyers.

Sean Woodward, executive leader said: ‘If you’re trying to build homes at a discount and sell them at a discount it's always then that it’ll benefit person number one that gets the house and then they’ll go and sell it at a large profit and then the gain of it being affordable is gone.

‘This is effectively a way of locking in that discount so it means it will be affordable in perpetuity.’

Applicants to the scheme have to be first-time buyers and must purchase the property as their main residence.

Other criteria include a gross household income of less than £80,000 and a mortgage to cover at least half of the discounted price.

They must also demonstrate that they can afford the purchase, sustain housing costs and put down a deposit of more than five per cent.

The first homes policy was introduced by the government in May last year.

Currently, affordable homes have to be supplied on developments of 20 or more or sites more than 0.5 hectares.

Since December last year 25 per cent of affordable home contributions have to be sold through the first homes scheme.

The council say they have identified the need for the policy due to its imminent introduction through the planning system.

The average house price in Fareham was recorded in the house price index as £330,331 which is around £60,000 more than the UK average.