Money Wellness
Image of a row of for sale signs
category iconhousing
calendar icon10 Aug 2023

Help to buy chaos leaves people unable to sell or remortgage

Homeowners using the government’s help to buy scheme to buy their properties have been left in limbo - unable to get the paperwork they need to sell or remortgage their properties - after a new company took over the scheme’s administration.  

The problem arose in June when Homes England - the government agency in charge of the help to buy scheme – switched administrator to a company called Lenvi.

Since then, people with help to buy loans have faced long call waiting times and delays in receiving the vital paperwork they need because of problems accessing data.

Lenvi has to provide an official statement to prove a help to buy loan has been paid off so a borrower can sell up and move house.

While borrowers can remortgage, they’re still required to provide information about the loan as it’s secured against the property.

In some cases, sales have fallen through, or homeowners have lost out on fixed rate mortgage deals at a time when interest rates are rising, and lenders are withdrawing deals or changing criteria daily.


What is help to buy?

Help to buy was a government scheme that helped first-time buyers get a property with just a 5% deposit.

It closed for new applicants last October but, when active, it let would-be-homeowners borrow 20% of the purchase price (40% in London), interest-free for five years.

Help to buy has helped more than 380,000 people get on the property ladder.


What can you do?

Homes England said they’re aware of the problems and are working hard to resolve them as quickly as possible.

Customers have been advised to only call for urgent requests.

Instead, you should email with your account number and completion date in the subject line, and they’ll respond as soon as possible.

Avatar of Caroline Chell

Caroline Chell

Caroline has worked in financial communications for more than 10 years, writing content on subjects such as pensions, mortgages, loans and credit cards, as well as stockbroking and investment advice.

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