The Help-to-Buy scheme: Expires December 2019

The Help-to-Buy scheme: Expires December 2019

There is a valuable initiative available this year for first-time buyers who can avail of the Irish government’s Help-to-Buy scheme, a tax refund initiative worth up to €20,000 to home buyers in Ireland. You can learn more here, or read on…..

We’ve answered some of the big questions for you

  • Confirm if you qualify for the scheme
  • See how much you are entitled to
  • Assess whether your possible new home fits the criteria

Our team can also detail the application process and provide you with simple step-by-step instructions that will help you register for, and ultimately secure your tax refund.

Please note, current government policy states that the Help-to-Buy scheme is due to expire on December 31st, 2019. It is uncertain whether late in the year contracts that are exchanged in 2019 but not closed until 2020, will qualify for the Help-to-Buy scheme but this is an outstanding query with Revenue. Please find a link to the Revenue.ie website here.

Read on to find out if you qualify for the scheme, see how much you are entitled to and assess whether your possible new home fits the criteria.

1. Background

Up to €20,000 available for first-time buyers with the Help-to-Buy incentive

The Help-to-Buy incentive is a government initiative designed to help you, as a first-time buyer, with raising the deposit needed to purchase a new house or apartment to live in as your home. Under the incentive and in association with Revenue.ie, you may receive a refund or rebate of Income Tax and Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) paid over the previous four tax years. DIRT is a form of tax on interest earned on bank accounts in Ireland and this is where your refund will come from.

2. Value

How much can you get?

The maximum tax rebate is 5% of the value of the property, up to €20,000. However, if you move, leave or sell within five years from the date the house is habitable, some or all of the rebate will have to be repaid. For example, Jack and Kate want to buy a 3-bed semi-detached home for €400,000. According to the Central Bank guidelines, they will need a 10% deposit (€40,000) to purchase their home. Under the Help-to-Buy incentive, they can now claim back a tax rebate of €20,000 (5% of the value). This means they now need to save a €20,000 deposit themselves, and add it to their rebate, giving them a full deposit of €40,000 to put down.

3. Criteria

Do you qualify?

You will qualify if you check these boxes.

  • First-time buyers
  • Owner-occupier
  • Borrowing at least 70% of the value of the property

Clog Na Leinn properties are already registered for the incentive.

4. Application

Six steps to making a claim and securing your refund

1. If you have not done so already, register with Revenue’s MyAccount service at Revenue. ie. To do this, you will need your personal public service (PPS) number, date of birth, phone number, email and home address. Self-assessed taxpayers must be fully compliant
2. Then, you need to complete a ‘Form 12’ tax return for each of the years on which you are seeking a rebate of tax paid
3. To complete the online application process, you will need to upload a copy of the signed new home contract, provided by your solicitor, as well as details of the property, its purchase price and the completion date.
4. You will also need to provide details of the mortgage lender and of the mortgage, including all deposits paid, and how much you are borrowing from your lender
5. Finally, you will need to upload your builder/ developer’s details. Once the claim is submitted, as part of the claim process, the details will need to be verified by your builder/developer, who in turn will also confirm details of the purchase with Revenue
6. Your refund will be paid directly to your builder/ developer and deducted from the cost of the property. That means the bottom priced Clog Na Leinn home could be yours for a monthly payment of €920, and minimal maintenance costs for the rest of the year due to our A1 Energy rating.

Need more help with your Mortgage?

Raising the deposit to buy your new home is just one part of the mortgage preparation process.

Visit sherryfitz.ie to read our complete guide to ‘Getting Mortgage Ready’ and understand how to get your finances in order before you start the application phase.

While there, you can also complete our online mortgage enquiry form, leave your details and a member of our team will be in touch very shortly. You can also contact our local agent Jennifer Walsh, of Sherry Fitzgerald Davitt and Davitt on 044 966 1000 or jwalsh@sfdd.ie.