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Armed forces now in front line to buy a new home

The Government-backed initiative formally gives priority to men and women who have served in the Forces.

Barratt London is topping up the offer for servicemen and women by giving them £500 of furniture vouchers for every £25,000 they spend on the house. And the housebuilder has set-up a special Armed Forces hotline for any personnel who are interested.

“In normal circumstances it can be very difficult for men and women who have served in the Forces to buy a home of their own because of the difficulty of raising a deposit and getting a mortgage,” said Gary Patrick, regional sales director for Barratt London.

“But this initiative means that first time buyers in London now have the chance to move into a new home with a deposit of as little as £6,700. Armed Forces personnel who want to go to the front of the queue should call our hotline on 0844 815 6196.”

“Barratt has been supporting the Armed Forces for many years by offering discounts on our homes and making donations to the Help for Heroes charity. Homes are getting more expensive so people serving in the Army, Navy or RAF may never have a better opportunity to take their first step on the property ladder.”

Housing Minister Grant Shapps MP, unveiling the FirstBuy scheme, said: “If you have served in the military, that bravery will be recognised when it comes to housing.”

The offer also applies to ex-Regular Servicemen and women who have served for a minimum of six years and also to the surviving partners of military personnel who have died in service.

It isn’t only the Armed Forces who will be eligible to take advantage of FirstBuy. Any household with a combined income of up to £60,000 qualifies.

Under FirstBuy, buyers will be offered a loan of up to 20 per cent of the price of the property, jointly funded by Barratt London and the Government’s Homes and Communities Agency.

The buyers then have to find the remaining 80 per cent of the price themselves. Up to 75 per cent of this could be a mortgage, leaving a deposit of just five per cent.

In practice, that means that anyone buying a two-bedroom apartment from Barratt London’s Renaissance development, priced at £236,000, under the scheme would potentially be able to get on the housing ladder with a deposit of as little as £9,440.

Homes currently available from Barratt London under the FirstBuy scheme include Renaissance in Lewisham, South East London.

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