Help to Buy South has helped hundreds of people to purchase or rent their new home.  Here are just a few of the success stories:

"It was an opportunity too good to miss"

Owning your first home together is an aspiration of many young couples, but privately renting in our area of the country is often too expensive to be able to save towards a mortgage deposit at the same time. That's why more and more twenty-somethings are staying at home with mum and dad to be able to save up that valuable deposit.

Natalie Winslade, 22, and her boyfriend Alex Lowley, 20, were in just that position.

"We were both living separately at home with our parents as we couldn't afford to save otherwise. We had a small deposit but we didn't think it would be enough to buy on the 'open market." explains Natalie. "We went along to the Scholars Walk development in Cosham to see what they had on offer and to find out if we could afford to buy anything."

Natalie and Alex, both from Portsmouth, were then told about the Government's equity loan scheme FirstBuy, specifically designed to help first time buyers struggling with the need for a large deposit. The scheme can help you purchase a new build home on selected developments with the assistance of an equity loan up to 20% of the value of the home. With nothing to pay on the equity loan for the first five years of living in the property, and only needing a 5% deposit, the scheme was ideal for the couple.

"We went home and looked up the scheme on the HomeBuy Agent's, HomesinHants', website, www.homesinhants.co.uk. FirstBuy was too good of an opportunity to miss," says Alex.

With a mortgage deposit of under £7,000 and the FirstBuy equity loan, Natalie and Alex went on to buy a spacious 2 bedroom apartment at the Taylor Wimpey development for £137,000.

"We're paying less than £480 a month on our mortgage repayments so not only do we have our own home, it's affordable to," says Natalie. "The whole process was very quick and easy, and without the scheme I don't think we'd ever have been able to buy such an amazing first home."