Help to Buy ISA Calculator

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Help to Buy ISA

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Help To Buy

Government-backed incentive in place in to help first time buyers.

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The Help To Buy ISA

The Help To Buy ISA is a popular government scheme to help top up savings and get more individuals on the property ladder. The scheme will top up your savings with a free government bonus, allowing you to better manage the costs associated with buying a property.

What bonus is available on the government Help to Buy ISA?

The government bonus from the Help to Buy ISA is 25% on savings up to £12,000. This means you get a maximum bonus of £3000 if you are saving the maximum amount every month. If you save more than £12,000, the bonus does not increase. You have to meet the minimum threshold of £1,600 to secure any bonus.

The bonus is released once your mortgage application is completed, so you won't see the funds in your account. Once your mortgage application is completed, your solicitor will apply for the bonus top up and this will be added to the deposit amount.

If you have a special Help to Buy ISA, you can contribute up to £200 per month to your ISA. You can also make an initial deposit of up to £1,200.

What is the maximum bonus I can receive on a first-time buyer ISA?

The most you can secure from your first-time buyer ISA is £3,000 on £12,000 savings. This would boost your deposit from £12,000 to £15,000 which could make a significant difference to the amount you can borrow. If you are saving with a partner, you can both make use of the scheme, provided you are both first-time buyers. This means you could earn up to £6,000 on £24,000 savings.

What is the minimum bonus on a Help to Buy ISA?

You have to save at least £1,600 before you are eligible for any bonus. This would secure a government top-up of £400, taking your total up to £2,000. If you don't meet the £1,600 threshold, you will be able to access your savings any time you like, but you won't be eligible for any bonuses.

How do I know how much Help-to-Buy ISA bonus I will receive?

The Help-to-Buy ISA bonus is based on a 25% top up on any amount between £1,600 and £12,000. The amount you receive will be directly linked to your savings at the time of your application.

If you save less than £1,600 then you won't be eligible for any bonus. And if you save more then £12,000 you won't be eligible for any bonus above £3,000. The table below shows example amounts you could receive if you save money in your Help-to-Buy ISA.

Amount Paid In

Government Bonus

Total amount in ISA





































This table shows the exact figures in £1,000 multiples. Your exact savings amount might be different from this. To calculate how much you will receive, simply add 25% to the total. You can do this by multiplying your savings amount by 1.25.

For example, if you save £8,293, this would be topped up to £10,366.25.

Can I only use my Help-to-Buy ISA bonus for a property?

The Help-to-Buy ISA can only be used for property. You will only be eligible for your bonus once your mortgage application is completed. If you decide to use your savings for something else, you will still be able to access the money, but you won't be able to access the government bonus.

It's also worth noting that the bonus is only accessible once your mortgage application is completed. This means it is typically used to pay for solicitors fees and any other outstanding costs. It typically can't be added to your initial deposit amount. However, knowing that other costs will be covered by the bonus will allow you to put more of your personal savings towards your deposit.

Some lenders are more flexible than others, so it's worth shopping around if you are hoping to use your Help-to-Buy ISA bonus as part of your deposit.

How to claim the Help to Buy ISA bonus

Claiming your bonus is very simple, and you often don't have to lift a finger. When your mortgage is nearing completion, your solicitor will request the bonus from the government. The bonus will be paid directly to the solicitor, so you don't have to worry about anything.

You will need to complete the following steps to close your Help to Buy ISA and request your bonus.

Step one: Withdraw all of the funds from your ISA account and request your closing statement from the provider. If you empty your account without your closing statement, you could lose out on your bonus.

Step two: Give the closing statement to your solicitor so they can request the money from the government.

Step three: The bonus amount will be sent directly to your solicitor or conveyance, so you don't have to worry about managing the funds.

Step four: If you plan to exchange and complete on the same day, your solicitor can follow an expedited application to get your funds faster. This step will not require closing the account. Instead, you simply provide a current ISA statement.

For more information about the ISA application process, get in touch with our team. We can help point you in the right direction for advice and support.

How long does it take to close a Help to Buy ISA?

The process takes around 5-7 working days from the request to the moment you receive your closing statement. This statement is valid for 12 months, but there are steps you can take if this process takes longer. Your solicitor/conveyancer can apply for a purchase failing note from the UKAR Corporate Services to make sure the sale doesn't fall through during this time.

You can still use the Help to Buy ISA savings account if you are a cash buyer, but you might not qualify for the bonus. This is because the bonus is only eligible on mortgage applications, and a cash buyer would typically not require a mortgage.

If your house sale falls through, or if you decide not to buy a property, you can apply for something known as a 'purchase failure notification'. This will let your lender know that the sale didn't go through and allow you to put your funds back into a Help to Buy ISA. This will allow you to revisit your mortgage application at a later date without losing your investment. Alternatively, you could place your funds in a stocks and shares ISA.

If you have already received your bonus, your solicitor will need to repay this before you can receive the notification required.

Speak to an expert mortgage broker about Help to Buy ISA bonuses

If you need any advice about the Help to Buy ISA, speak to one of our qualified mortgage brokers. They will be able to help you with your savings plan and explain whether it's worth investing in a Help to Buy ISA.

Niche Mortgage Info is a guidance website and introducer and is not regulated by the FCA. All of the advisers we partner with work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the FCA and specialise in a number of different fields. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice.

By making an enquiry you accept that your information will be passed to one of the specialists.