Home-buying scheme extended

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A SCOTTISH Government-backed scheme to help people struggling to buy new homes has been extended to include part exchange of existing

The MI Home programme, launched by deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon last year to help people trying to raise a deposit, will now be open to second steppers who are finding it hard to find a buyer for their existing property.

The latest Bank of Scotland Home Movers Review showed second steppers are now “bearing the brunt of the stagnant housing market” as they struggle to find deposits averaging £47,003.

Philip Hogg, chief executive of home building industry body Homes for Scotland, said: “This latest announcement is a welcome addition to the wide-ranging number of benefits associated with the MI New Home scheme.

“Part exchange is just one of the solutions available to help new build customers achieve their home ownership aspirations and another key differentiator from the second-hand market. As well as providing confidence and reassurance through a guaranteed sale at a guaranteed price, part exchange also removes the stress and hassle which can be associated with putting your home on the open market.”

Laurence Mann, head of mortgages at the Bank of Scotland, said: “As our research shows, many second steppers are finding it increasingly difficult to make that move up the housing ladder, which is having a considerable knock-on impact for potential first-time buyers due to the resulting shortage of properties available on the market.

“Part exchange can often offer people an easier and more affordable alternative when moving up the housing ladder, and we therefore welcome today’s addition of this option to the MI New Home scheme.”