More first-time buyers using LISAs

Michael Lloyd

April 18, 2019

Some 80% of members opening a lifetime ISA (LISA) with Nottingham Building Society are first-time buyers planning to use the funds for their first home.

When members open their LISA with the Nottingham and want to buy their first home they have access to a Nottingham Mortgage Services adviser. The society launched the government-backed savings product in branches last August and the online version was launched Tuesday 19 March.

Tina Hayton-Banks, director of member services at The Nottingham, said: “When you consider bonuses of up to £1,000 a year are available for every £4,000 saved, it’s a genuinely beneficial account that can help people buy their first home sooner or have more deposit to put down and possibly reducing their loan-to-value.

“To offer whole of market mortgage mortgage advice without a fee in addition to this is another demonstration of how The Nottingham is supporting first-time buyers across the country.”

Since the Nottingham launched LISA, up to the end of February it has seen six times as many (600% more) LISAs open compared Help to Buy ISAs. In the first two months of this year it has seen about five times more LISAs open versus Help to Buy ISAs (550%).

The government has confirmed it will go ahead with plans to stop accepting new applications for the Help-to-Buy ISA from 30 November this year.

The lifetime ISA account was announced by the government in 2017 for those aged 18-39, who are either saving for their first home or retirement and later life post 60 years old.

Hayton-Banks added: “We know there are think tanks, financial institutions and MPs that have been critical of the lifetime ISA, with some even calling for it to be scrapped and to those we say – you’re wrong.

“Real people are voting with their feet and hundreds of thousands of savers are benefitting. At The Nottingham, 17% more members are opting for a Lifetime ISA over a Help-to-Buy ISA so it’s clear to see there’s appetite but also a need for more awareness.

“An account that supports first-time buyers and retirement savers with tangible benefits in the form of cash bonuses has our full backing and should be here to stay.”

“Although there are more first-time buyers opening the account, it doesn’t mean they won’t turn into retirement savers.

“That’s why it’s called a Lifetime ISA – you can continue saving into it once funds have been used for a house purchase. Switching to a long-term savings goal means people can continue to benefit from the government bonus payments and work towards boosting their retirement pot with the same account.”

Sign up to our daily email