When should I tell my conveyancing solicitor about my Help to Buy or Lifetime ISA?
To ensure your property purchase goes as smoothly as possible, you should ensure that your conveyancing solicitor is aware that your purchase will be aided via a Help to Buy or Lifetime ISA at the earliest opportunity. This is because there are certain procedures that are to be followed, dependent on the type of ISA being used.
When utilising a Help to Buy ISA, your conveyancing solicitor will require that you complete a first-time buyer declaration form, confirming that you are, indeed, a first-time buyer. You can download a copy of the HM Treasury's First Time Buyer Declaration form, here. In addition, when the time comes, your conveyancer will also require an official closing statement from the bank, confirming the account has been closed. Both are required in order to redeem the ISA bonus on your behalf.
Where purchasing with a lifetime ISA, there is a set period of time in which funds are to be requested. Usually, this is a circa thirty-day requirement in order to give sufficient notice for the drawing down of funds and redemption of the ISA bonus.
As you can see, both entail slightly different procedures, however, do involve certain time constraints. It is, therefore, imperative to advise your property conveyancing solicitor of such matters, upon commencement of the transaction.
Can I still open a Help to Buy ISA?
The deadline was the 30 November 2019 but you can carry on saving in the account until the 30 November 2029 but you must use the bonus by the 1st December 2030.
What kind of property I buy with my Help to Buy bonus?
- A Property in the UK;
- A property which is valued at less than £250,000.00 or less that £450,000.00
if you live in London;
- A property where you intend to live;
- A property you are purchasing with a mortgage.
Can I use the bonus as my deposit?
No. You cannot use the money towards your deposit. The bonus can only be requested after exchange has taken place and to exchange contracts you need the deposit.
When do I get the money?
The ISA funds and your bonus will be sent direct to your solicitors. If you have instructed MG Legal's, solicitors in Lancaster, we will request the funds on your behalf. The funds will then be sent to us in time for completion. The funds will never go into your account.
What other initiatives can I use?
You can use your Help to Buy ISA alongside other government schemes such as Help to Buy: Equity Loan Scheme and Shared Ownership.
How much do I need to have saved in the ISA?
You must save at least £1,600.00 before you can claim any bonus.
What will my bonus be?
Follow this link which leads you to a handy calculator to work out how much you need to save to claim your bonus.