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Posted: 02.04.15

Labour plans home-building fund for first-time buyers

Labour plans home-building fund for first-time buyers

With housing continuing to be a key election issue, Ed Miliband has announced that banks would be encouraged to fund 125,000 new homes for first-time buyers in England under a Labour government.

The scheme would see the government top up money people save towards a deposit to buy their first house.

Referred to as the first-time buyers’ ISA - a concept unveiled by Chancellor George Osborne in his last budget – the scheme is designed to help people establish a foot on the housing ladder.

If implemented, the plan would allow the government to top up by £50 every £200 a first-time buyer saves for a deposit.

In addition, any bank or building society that offered such an ISA would be required to invest the money in housing.

This would unlock £5bn to invest in a Future Homes Investment Fund to build 125,000 new homes between 2015 and 2020, according to Mr Miliband, and a Labour government would underwrite the investment.

The party has already committed to building 200,000 new homes every year by the end of the next Parliament but this scheme is aimed at getting the policy moving.

Other parties pledges to boost the supply of homes across the country and make home ownership more achievable come from the Conservatives who say they will see 200,000 homes built for first-time buyers in England by 2020 and the Lib Dems who say they’ll get first-time-buyers on the property ladder through a "rent-to-own homes" scheme.

Referring to the current government Mr Miliband attacked its record on house building, which he said had fallen to its lowest level in almost 100 years and made it harder for people to own homes.

"A Labour government will get Britain building again," he said.