Help to Buy: ISA

Make the most of the Government's 25% bonus towards a deposit for your first home

Earn 2.00% tax free/AER variable

 

Key Features:

  • Open the account with £1 up to £1,000 – this must be received within 21 days of account opening.
  • Save from £1 to £200 each month by standing order to be received by 25th of each month.
  • There are no restrictions on withdrawals (although you will not be able to claim any Help to Buy: ISA bonus on the funds you withdraw and it will take longer to save enough to qualify for the maximum bonus)
  • Transfers into our cash ISAs take advantage of our ISA promise. You will be able to transfer the full balance from another Help to Buy: ISA or up to £1,000 from any other ISAs
  • Manage your account in branch, on the telephone or through our Internet Banking.

Bear in mind

  • You must be a first time buyer to open a Help to Buy: ISA account
  • Your bonus is paid on purchase of a property up to the value of £250,000 outside London and £450,000 inside London
  • You cannot pay into another cash ISA in the same tax year
  • Unlimited withdrawals but you will not be able to claim any Help to Buy: ISA bonus on the funds you withdraw
  • You can make monthly contributions of up to £200 per month. You can pay into the account once a month by standing order. This must be paid by the 25th of the month.
  • Government Help to Buy: ISA bonus of 25% on your final balance up to a maximum of £3,000 (based on eligibility)

Summary box

Account name
Help to Buy: ISA
Interest rates (AERs)
2.00% tax free/AER variable.
Tax Status
Interest is paid tax free.
Conditions for bonus payment
We don’t offer a bonus on the account but the Government will offer a 25% bonus on closure of this account if the funds are used as a deposit to buy your first property (based on eligibility).

The minimum closing balance to receive the 25% Government bonus is £1600 (£400 bonus). The maximum Government bonus is £3,000 per person (on a closing balance of £12,000 or more).
Withdrawal arrangements
No notice period.
Unlimited withdrawals with no loss of interest (you will not be able to claim any Help to Buy: ISA bonus on the funds you withdraw).
Access
Online, phone and branch.

More information on the Help to Buy: ISA

How it works

  • The account is designed specifically for first time buyers looking to save a deposit towards their first home.
  • Once your ISA is opened you can make in an initial deposit of up to £1000 for the first 21 days.
  • You can make further contributions of up to £200 per month by standing order. This must be paid by the 25th of the month.
  • The Help to Buy: ISA allowance is lower than the overall ISA allowance. You can only pay into one cash ISA in any tax year so your remaining allowance can only be invested in to a stocks and shares ISA and/or an innovative finance ISA (contributions to Help to Buy: ISA and/or a stocks and shares ISA and/or innovative finance ISA must not exceed the overall limit of £15,240).
  • The Government Help to Buy: ISA bonus is 25% of your final closing balance, up to the maximum of £3,000. Your closing balance must be at least £1,600 to qualify for the Government contribution.

How the interest works

  • Variable interest means the rate you earn can go up or down.
  • Interest earned on the balance will be tax free.
  • Interest calculated daily and paid on the anniversary of the date you opened your account.

Eligibility

  • To open a Help to Buy: ISA you must be 16 or over and you must be resident in the UK for tax purposes. (You must be 18 to be considered for a mortgage).
  • You must be a first time buyer, this means you must not have owned in full, or a share of a property previously.
  • You have not previously received a bonus payment under the Help to Buy: ISA scheme (unless it has been paid back in full).
  • The value of the property you are purchasing must not exceed £250,000 outside London, £450,000 within London.

Transferring your ISA

Existing ISA balances can be transferred into this account from another ISA provider, as long as you complete as ISA transfer in.

  • Transferring from a Help to Buy: ISA – the full funds in that ISA must be transferred to us. You are only allowed to have one Help to Buy: ISA.
  • Transferring from another cash ISA – the transfer request must be made within 21 days of opening your Help to Buy: ISA, and can only be used to fund part or all of your initial deposit up to £1000. Your current year's subscriptions must be transferred in full as you are only allowed to fund one cash ISA per tax year.

If your transfer is delayed because your existing ISA has a notice period, your current provider will let us know when it will be free to move to us, and we will pay interest from that date. Your current ISA provider may apply switching costs.

Do not transfer any ISA balance yourself as you will lose your tax benefits.

Transferring from a Bank of Scotland ISA (PDF) >
Transferring from another ISA provider (PDF)  >

Government bonus

  • The Government Help to Buy: ISA bonus is 25% of your final closing balance subject to minimum and maximum amounts (based on eligibility).
  • The minimum Help to Buy: ISA bonus is £400, closing balances below £1,600 will not be eligible for a Help to Buy bonus.
  • The maximum Government Help to Buy: ISA bonus is £3,000.
  • When you're ready to buy your first home you'll need to close your account in one transaction and provide your Help to Buy: ISA closing documents to your conveyancer and they will claim the bonus on your behalf.

Other things to be aware of

  • The Help to Buy: ISA is a cash ISA - you cannot contribute to another cash ISA in the same tax year. Any remaining ISA allowance can only be added to a stocks and shares ISA and/or an innovative finance ISA.
  • You can make unlimited withdrawals, but you will not be able to claim any Help to Buy bonus on the funds you withdraw and it will take you longer to save enough to qualify for the maximum bonus as you can only pay in £200 each month.
  • You can withdraw online by internal transfer into another Bank of Scotland account you own. If you want to complete a Faster Payment you can do this in branch or by Telephone Banking.
  • You can't close your Help to Buy: ISA online.
  • For further information you can visit: http://www.helptobuy.gov.uk/isa.

 

Open a Help to Buy: ISA today.

 

 Open a Help to Buy: ISA


Or if you use our Internet Banking service already, log in and open an account today.

Please note, from 2 September 2016, we are making some important changes to our account conditions and information.

We recommend that you download and read the account conditions (PDF) carefully as they form a legal contract with us. If there is anything you do not understand, please contact us before you agree to them (as part of the application).

For further information you can visit: http://www.helptobuy.gov.uk/isa.

Tax treatment depends on your individual circumstances and may change.

Please note:
Rates of interest are subject to change. Rates effective from 0.00am on 01/12/2015.
For a definition of AER, tax free and other terms please view our savings glossary.

Open a Help to Buy: ISA today.

Common enquiries

If you have any more questions, you will find our most frequently asked ISA questions in the common enquiries page.

 Common enquiries

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