Help to Buy scheme criticised as house prices rise


The government’s Help to Buy mortgage scheme has been criticised by the opposition, as the housing market shows no signs of slowing down.

A survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said that nearly three-fifths of surveyors reported house price rises this month. This is the highest rate in more than ten years.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS’ chief economist, said: “The amount of homes up for sale is still nowhere near enough to keep up with demand and, in order for the market to function correctly, this imbalance urgently needs to be addressed.”

Earlier this week, David Cameron praised the new Help to Buy scheme, saying that every day 75 families are taking steps to buy their first home. However, the Opposition believes this new scheme could actually be making the problem worse. This is because the savings for people taking out the new 95 per cent mortgages could be eradicated by the increase in house prices fuelled by the new mortgage scheme. 

Chris Leslie, the shadow chief secretary to the treasury, said: “The prices of those properties are going to get more out of reach and this concept of affordability will just be a mirage.”

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