Saving a deposit to buy your first home can be a challenge, but now there's a way you can get a helping hand.
Save up to £1,200 in the first calendar month, then up to £200 per calendar month (please note that the later in the month you first fund the less time you will have to add funds for the month. For example if you deposit some of your allowance on the 25th January, you have until 31st January to use the rest of your monthly allowance)
Earn 2.50% AER / 2.47% tax-free on your savings
When you are ready to buy your first home you'll qualify for a 25% UK Government bonus on amounts saved between £1,600 & £12,000
The UK Government bonus is paid on property prices up to £450,000 in London and £250,000 elsewhere in the UK. It is paid towards the completion cost of your first home (and not towards the deposit)
When you are ready to buy your first home you should request to close your Ulster Bank Help to Buy:ISA. Once closed we will send you a Closing Document that your conveyancer (e.g. solicitor) will need to claim the bonus from the UK Government. Do not withdraw funds before closing your account and please allow 5 days for account closure and a further 5 days for the Closing Document to be sent.
Please read the Summary Box below before applying and full scheme rules can be found at: www.helptobuy.gov.uk/isa
5. Can I withdraw money?
Yes. No notice is required. You can withdraw money: in branch or by transfer to any other account based in the UK (online, by telephone or on the mobile app).
However, due to the monthly subscription limit you will only be able to make payments up to £200 a month in total so by making withdrawals you may reduce or take longer to save for your bonus.
Please note that you will not be able to claim the Government bonus on any money you have withdrawn from your Help to Buy: ISA.
You can transfer your Help to Buy: ISA to another ISA manager.
6. Additional information
Closing your Help to Buy: ISA and claiming your bonus
When you are ready to buy your first home you must request to close your Help to Buy: ISA. You can do this over the phone, or by giving written notice to your branch either by post or by handing it in. Any withdrawals you make before closing your account will reduce the value of the bonus you can claim.
We will then arrange to close your account, which can take up to 5 working days.
Within 5 working days of your account being closed, we will send you a Closing Document, which your conveyancer (the party acting on your behalf to purchase the property) will need to claim the bonus from the UK Government.
You have up to 12 months from closing your Help to Buy: ISA to claim your bonus but this should be done as soon as possible to make sure the bonus is received before you are due to complete the purchase of your new home.
The bonus will be paid directly to your conveyancer, who will add it to your deposit and mortgage funds to make up the total purchase price of your new home.
Please note your closing balance must be at least £1,600 in order to obtain a bonus, so opening an account does not guarantee you will be entitled to a bonus. The maximum bonus you can earn is £3,000.
Additionally, there is a maximum property price beyond which a bonus will not be payable
For more information on the Help to Buy: ISA Scheme (including how to claim your bonus from HM Treasury), please refer to the Help to Buy: ISA Scheme Rules at www.helptobuy.gov.uk/isa.
The interest payable is tax-free. The tax treatment may be subject to change in the future and depends on your individual circumstances.
AER (Annual Equivalent Rate):
This is a notional rate used for interest bearing accounts, which illustrates the interest rate if paid and compounded each year. It helps you to compare the effective rates of credit interest on different accounts.
Per annum (per year).
Interest which is exempt from UK income tax.
Who is the Ulster Bank Help to Buy: ISA for?
Anyone who's saving towards buying their first home who's a UK resident for tax purposes, aged 16 and over.
Can I save in a Help to Buy: ISA as well as a regular ISA?
You can as long as both ISAs are with Ulster Bank. We'll allow you to save into both a Help to Buy: ISA and a 'regular' cash ISA in the same tax year as long as your overall ISA savings (including any other stocks and shares ISA or innovative finance ISA fund you may have) don't exceed your annual ISA allowance. In the 2017/18 tax year this is £20,000.
As an example, you could save £2,000 in your Ulster Bank Help to Buy: ISA and up to £18,000 in a 'regular' Ulster Bank cash ISA.
Are there limits on the bonus I can get with the Help to Buy: ISA?
Yes - there are minimum and maximum savings amounts to qualify.The minimum savings amount is £1,600 - this would give you a bonus of £400.The maximum savings amount is £12,000 - this would give you a bonus of £3,000
Financial Services Compensation Scheme
Your eligible deposits with Ulster Bank are protected up to a total of £85,000 by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, the UK's deposit protection scheme.
Find out more about the scheme and how it protects your money.