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Chamber and committees

Question reference: S6W-12059

  • Asked by: Liam McArthur, MSP for Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats
  • Date lodged: 10 November 2022
  • Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 30 November 2022


To ask the Scottish Government what steps it will take to promote future take-up of the First Home Fund, including in rural and island communities.


The First Home Fund closed at the end of the 2021-22 financial year. The Scottish Government does not plan to reopen the fund - key findings from the evaluation show that 72% of buyers would have been able to purchase a property which met their needs without financial assistance. However, we continue to support home ownership through various interventions to help first time buyers. These include our Low Cost Initiative for First-Time Buyers (LIFT) scheme which helps people on low to moderate incomes to buy their first home either through the open market (Open Market Shared Equity) or new build (New Supply Shared Equity). Support is also available through the Self Build Loan Fund.

The Islands Impact Assessment became a legal duty in December 2020, one year after the launch of the First Home Fund. Nonetheless, as the fund was available to all eligible applicants in Scotland to utilise, with no upper price cap, it was not likely to have an effect on an island community which was significantly different from its effect on other communities.