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Finding The Right Help to Buy Mortgage Lender

Which Help to Buy mortgage lender is right for you?

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Pete Mugleston

Author: Pete Mugleston - Mortgage Advisor, MD

Updated: June 16, 2022


📢 *UPDATE 06/04/2021: The Help to Buy scheme has now entered its third phase (2021-23) and a few of the rules around it have been altered. Some of the information in this article may be subject to change but you can read up on the latest update to the equity loan scheme here 🏠

Many mortgage lenders in the UK are willing to offer finance to customers who are applying through the Help to Buy scheme, but the deals they’re offering can vary dramatically.

Naturally, the last thing you’d ever want to do is apply to Help to Buy mortgage lender who is likely to say no, as that not only takes up time you may not be able to afford, but can also leave an unwanted and unhelpful footprint on your credit history.

So in this article, we’ll be outlining what you should look for in Help to Buy mortgage providers

Which Help to Buy mortgage lender is right for me?

This is a question you should put to a whole-of-market broker, as the right lender for you will be the mortgage provider who’s best positioned to offer favourable rates to a Help to buy customer with your exact profile.

Even if you think you’ve found the right lender yourself, approaching them directly means you will only have access to their products and could potentially miss out on a better deal available elsewhere.

Furthermore, approaching multiple lenders in search of the best rates could mean you end up negatively affecting your credit file, putting future finance applications in jeopardy.

But if you make an enquiry with us, the advisors we work with will ensure that you’re introduced to the best H2B mortgage provider for your needs and circumstances, the first time around.

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We know everyone's circumstances are different, that's why we work with mortgage brokers who are experts in all different mortgage subjects.

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How are Help to Buy equity loan mortgage lenders different to other providers?

Some Help to Buy mortgage providers look more kindly on older buyers than others, for instance; while some are more helpful to those applying for a self-employed mortgage than others, and different Help to Buy mortgage providers have different approaches to everything from income multiples to credit histories.

That’s why, while we hope you’ll find the Help to Buy Mortgage lenders list below to be helpful, it really is worth talking to one of the Help to Buy mortgage experts we work with before making a mortgage application to a particular Help to Buy mortgage provider.

After all, they work with the whole of the market, and so have a pretty good feel for where your application is more likely to be successful.

Is there a Help to Buy Mortgage lenders list?

There’s no official record of which banks offer Help to Buy mortgages; so to help you with your research, here is a potted list of the best Help to Buy mortgage providers in England, Scotland and Wales, together with a few useful facts about their generosity, or otherwise.

Who offers Help to Buy mortgages?

The following products are popular among H2B mortgage applicants…

Halifax Help to Buy mortgage

Halifax currently applies an income multiple cap of 4.5x salary on all Help to Buy mortgages, and requires that the term of the mortgage is shorter or equal to the term of the Help to Buy Equity loan. They also require that the minimum 5% deposit comes exclusively from an acceptable source such as savings or equity from a previous property, though builder deposit contributions may be added to this. There is also a Halifax Help to Buy remortgage option available.

Nationwide Help to Buy Mortgage

Nationwide won’t accept Builder Cashback as a deposit, even where it’s being used in addition to acceptable deposit sources. In fact, if a deposit is found to have come from an unacceptable source after a mortgage offer has been issued, it can be withdrawn.

However, they will allow builder incentives such as payments for legal fees, stamp duty and white goods, as long as you are providing a minimum of 5% deposit from your own resources, such as personal savings or equity from a previous property.

The terms of a Nationwide Help to Buy mortgage also specify that properties subject to a Section 106 or 75 Agreement – making them subject to agreements between the developer and the local planning authority about measures to reduce their impact on the community – are not eligible for Nationwide Help to Buy criteria.

Barclays Help to Buy Mortgage

Barclays puts a 40-year maximum term on all Help to Buy mortgages, which are available in England, Scotland and Wales. As with all Help to Buy mortgages, they expect you to have a 5% deposit from your own resources, and that any additional builder incentives such as deposit contributions or cashback don’t exceed 5% of the overall purchase price.

As with the Nationwide H2B mortgage, a Barclays Help to Buy mortgage isn’t available where a Section 106 agreement is in place, and they also specify that any non-financial incentives – including things like white goods, kitchen and bathroom upgrades, solar panels and landscaping – are declared to the valuer on the ‘Disclosure of Incentives’ form.

Natwest Help to Buy Mortgage

NatWest doesn’t publish full details of its terms and conditions for Help to Buy mortgages, but many of the basics such as the requirement for a minimum 5% deposit contribution to come from your own resources are the same as with other Help to Buy mortgage lenders.

This mortgage provider, however, only offers Help to Buy for properties in England.

Santander Help to Buy Mortgage

Santander accepts mortgage applications under the Help to Buy equity loan scheme in England only. However, Santander will also accept remortgage applications to redeem a shared equity loan in full, including those from Help to Buy schemes in England, Scotland and Wales.

Builder cash incentives are not permitted by Santander.

Lloyds Help to Buy Mortgage

Lloyds Bank participates in the government’s Help to Buy equity loan scheme, but doesn’t publish any details of specific lending criteria, other than the fact that the 5% deposit needs to come from your own resources. However, many of the experts we work with are able to help you decide whether Lloyds would be a suitable choice for you.

Virgin Money Help to Buy Mortgage

Virgin Money requires you to have a 5% deposit from your own resources, and also that any incentives from the builder – whether in the form of cash incentives such as stamp duty help, or non-cash incentives like white goods and landscaping – comprise no more than 5% of the total purchase price.

In order to ensure that your Help to Buy Equity Loan is affordable in the long run, Virgin Money also assumes an annual fee of 3% of the Equity Loan spread over a year as a monthly financial commitment.

If one of the lenders mentioned above sounds like a good fit for you, it’s still worth seeking specialist advice before proceeding as the brokers we work with often have access to exclusive deals with certain lenders, and they can cross-check any deals you’re offered to make sure the rates are the most favourable around.

Who else does Help to Buy mortgages?

In addition to the Help to Buy lenders we have already discussed above, the experts we work with have also successfully arranged Help to Buy mortgages with the following lenders, some of who are more niche than the providers we discussed earlier in this article…

List of additional banks and other lenders offering Help to Buy

  • First Direct
  • Skipton
  • Bank of Scotland
  • Coventry Building Society
  • Leeds Building Society
  • Post Office
  • Kensington Mortgages
  • Yorkshire Building Society
  • Co op
  • Accord Mortgages
  • Aldermore Mortgages
  • Woolwich
  • Clydesdale
  • Metro Bank
  • Chorley Building Society
  • Together Mortgages
  • Platform Help to Buy
  • Bank of Ireland
  • Pepper Mortgages
  • Teachers Building Society

Can I get a HSBC Help to Buy Mortgage?

Unfortunately, HSBC doesn’t participate in the government’s Help to Buy equity loan scheme in England, Wales or Scotland.

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Which banks offer the best rates on Help to Buy mortgages?

Firstly, it isn’t just banks who offer H2B mortgages – others types of lender will provide them to, as long as you meet their eligibility requirements.

In terms of which lender offers the best rates to H2B customers, there’s no definitive answer to this. The rates you end up with will come down to your profile as a borrower and how closely it meets the eligibility criteria at the mortgage provider you approach.

One lender which usually offers favourable deals might offer you a higher interest rate because of factors such as bad credit, your age or your employment status.

This is why it’s so important to seek specialist advice before you apply. Using a whole-of-market mortgage broker, like the ones we work with, will ensure that you’re introduced to the lender who is best positioned to offer a table-topping H2B deal to a customer with your circumstances.

Are there Help to Buy mortgage providers in Wales?

Yes! Many of the same lenders who offer Help to Buy mortgages in England also provide them in Wales with minimal postcode restrictions. See our guide to H2B Wales for more information.

Are there Help to Buy mortgage providers in Scotland?

Yes, but you’ll find that there are fewer of them compared to England. The lenders which do offer the Scottish equivalent of Help to Buy mortgages usually have postcode restrictions in place, do you might struggle to find a provider if you’re buying in an area like the Highlands.

With this in mind, it’s doubly important to use a whole-of-market broker as fewer approachable lenders means the most favourable rates are more difficult to come by.

You can find out more in our guide to Help to Buy Scotland here.

Ask an expert for advice about the best Help to Buy mortgage providers

Help to Buy equity loans really are a massive help for home buyers, whether you’re just starting out or looking for your next step up on the property ladder.

If you’re considering a Help to Buy mortgage for the new build home of your dreams, it’s a good idea to get some expert advice first; especially when it comes with no fee or obligations. Feel free to give us a call on 0808 189 2301 or make an enquiry online and we’ll help to find the most suitable broker for your needs.

You can also rest assured that we only ever work with accredited brokers who have a whole-of-market view and a consistent track record of successfully arranging Help to Buy mortgages for our customers. No doubt that’s why our customers consistently award us 5 stars on Feefo for service and quality of advice.

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About the author

Pete, an expert in all things mortgages, cut his teeth right in the middle of the credit crunch. With plenty of people needing help and few mortgage providers lending, Pete found great success in going the extra mile to find mortgages for people whom many others considered lost causes. The experience he gained, coupled with his love of helping people reach their goals, led him to establish Online Mortgage Advisor, with one clear vision – to help as many customers as possible get the right advice, regardless of need or background.

Pete’s presence in the industry as the ‘go-to’ for specialist finance continues to grow, and he is regularly cited in and writes for both local and national press, as well as trade publications, with a regular column in Mortgage Introducer and being the exclusive mortgage expert for LOVEMoney. Pete also writes for OMA of course!

Read more about Pete

Pete Mugleston

Mortgage Advisor, MD

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of the most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs.

Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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