Housing schemes

Use the links below to view details of our housing schemes lending criteria:

Deposit Unlock

First time buyers and home movers may be able to borrow between 90.01-95% LTV to purchase their New Build home with this scheme.

Learn more about Deposit Unlock


Forces Help to Buy (FHTB)

Read more about our Forces Help to Buy (FHTB) housing scheme and how to use it as a source of deposit.

Read more about our FHTB scheme Read how to use FHTB as a source of deposit

First Homes

What is First Homes?

First Homes are discounted market sale housing in England which has been developed by the government. The First Home:

  • Must be discounted by a minimum of 30% against the full market value
  • Must be sold to a person/persons meeting the First Homes eligibility criteria
  • On their first sale, will have a restriction registered on the title at HM Land Registry. This is to ensure the discount and other restrictions are passed on at each subsequent title transfer
  • After the discount has been applied, the first sale must be at a price no higher than £250,000 (or £420,000 in Greater London).

Who is eligible to purchase a First Home?

In order to purchase a First Home, the applicant/s must:

  • Be a First Time Buyer (as per the definition for Stamp Duty Relief)
  • Have a combined annual household income that doesn't exceed £80,000 (or £90,000 in Greater London) in the tax year immediately preceding the year of purchase
  • A mortgage or home purchase plan to fund a minimum of 50% of the discounted purchase price.

This applies to first sale and all future sales of First Homes.

First Homes is not available in conjunction with Helping Hand.

Our offer will have conditions, so the solicitor/conveyancer will need to check the scheme meets our requirements.

In addition to the above, local authorities may apply their own criteria.

For further information, please refer to the government website. Details on acceptable incentives can be found here.

How to apply with Nationwide

We are proud to have supported First Homes since it’s launch, which the government is currently rolling out through a number of pilot phases.

As a result, our process is a little different to a standard application and will depend on the Loan to Value of the application.

The Loan to Value (LTV) for both product and credit scoring purposes, is based on the discounted price/value, not the open market value. And is available up to 95% for both new build houses and flats.

All applications with an LTV of 85% or less for houses / 75% or less for flats

You can submit these applications using NFI Online. The ownership type selected should be ‘Restricted Sale Price’. Please take care when entering the purchase price and the full market value to ensure you get the correct LTV.

All applications with an LTV of 85.01% or more for houses / 75.01% or greater for flats

You can't submit these applications using NFI Online. Please follow the below steps:

Decision In Principle (DIP)

You'll need to complete a DIP via NFI online using the required Purchase Price and Loan amount. Don't key this as a New Build application or enter the security address. Instead, select ‘Property not yet found’. This will allow you to obtain a DIP decision for the applicant in order for you to refer the First Homes application to the Local authority.

Full Mortgage Application

Once the Local authority have agreed for the applicant/s to progress, you'll need to complete a manual application form, which you can find here.

You'll need to ensure that next to the Purchase Price in section 11 you note that this is a First Homes application. Make sure that you detail the product required in section 12, page 16.

The application form must be signed by the applicant/s. We'll accept a scanned signature from you.

Application submission

Please submit the below to us via email exceptions.manualapplications@nationwide.co.uk

  • A fully completed and signed Mortgage Application Form
  • Any supporting documents, as requested at DIP
  • A copy of the Disclosure of Incentives Form

The email should be titled ‘First Homes Application’ and include your applicants name, along with the following detailed:

  • M reference number from the DIP
  • Broker name and firm name

Post submission

Following submission, we'll contact you with the new application number. If we require further information or proofs, we'll let you know.

Once the application has been keyed, we'll instruct a valuation.

Application Updates

First Homes applications will not be available to view in case tracking.

If you require an update on the application, please contact our Dedicated New Build Support team by emailing Intermediary.RelationshipsNewbuild@nationwide.co.uk or calling 0345 607 22 45.


Shared Ownership

We accept mortgage applications on a shared ownership basis and the minimum initial share purchased by the applicant we will accept is 25%. The shared ownership rental amount must be included in the affordability calculation as an outgoing when submitting the case.

The applicant's solicitor/conveyancer must confirm to us that the shared ownership lease meets our requirements.

Find out more on the Low Cost Home Ownership/Special Schemes instructions and guidance on nationwide.co.uk

For information about maximum LTV limits please see our loan size and maximum LTV criteria, as conditions apply.

Loan size Maximum LTV criteria

Builder cashbacks are acceptable on Shared Ownership applications, subject to the current builder cashback rules.

If additional borrowing is required, it can only be considered for the following loan purposes:

  • Structural home improvements
  • Non-structural home improvements
  • Buy additional share (staircasing)
  • Buy final share (staircasing)
  • Buy out partner’s interest (non-borrower)

Additional borrowing for debt consolidation is not permitted.

Keying Remortgage Cases

When keying a remortgage application for a Shared Ownership property (including those that require additional borrowing to purchase an additional share or the final share), select ownership type ‘Shared Ownership’ for all cases.

In the Loan Requirements screen, enter the applicant’s estimated current condition value of the share that will be owned on completion, calculated using the percentage share they will own (including any new share now being purchased) against their estimated open market value, and the applicant’s estimated open market value in current condition. NFI Online uses these values to calculate the percentage share that will be owned.


Equity Share Loan (Including Help to Buy England and Wales)

Please note, applications for Help to Buy in England closed on the 31 October 2022. The deadline for completion was the 31 March 2023.

The deadline for Help to Buy Wales applications is on 31 March 2025. The deadline for completion is on or before 22 December 2025.

Equity Share and Help to Buy Remortgages

We don’t accept remortgage applications when an existing Equity Share Loan will continue. The existing mortgage and the equity loan must both be keyed in the Existing Details screen with no balance continuing. The loan purpose 'pay off second charge' must be selected.

Where a Help to Buy (HTB) Equity Loan is being paid off, a maximum LTV of 90% is only available if the only loan purpose selected is 'pay off second charge'. And the external scheme type is HTB, i.e. the only additional borrowing available at that LTV is to pay off a HTB equity loan in full.

More information on remortgage LTV limits can be found here.


Right to Buy Purchase

We can lend up to 100% of the discounted purchase price. We can also lend additional amounts for home improvements and up to £500 for legal fees.

Debt consolidation is not available on new Right to Buy properties.

If an applicant is in receipt of Housing Benefit this cannot be used as income to support the mortgage as it will not continue once the mortgage has completed. Even if the DWP agree to pay ISMI in its place this is not a form of income we will accept.


A-Z criteria

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A-Z criteria

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