First-time buyer numbers have almost recovered to pre-financial crash levels. New analysis from the Nationwide’s monthly House Price Index shows that annual house price growth has stayed stable, below 1 percent for the eighth month in a row – July’s rate was 0.3 percent.Help to Buy ISA is drawing closer. FTBs can claim up to £3,000 tax free from the Government-backed scheme towards a deposit on a first property purchase. However, the scheme will close to new savers on November 30 this year, so time is of the essence for FTBs to get their share of the available finance. The alternative, Lifetime ISA, will be the long-term replacement for the Help to Buy ISA, and FTBs can open an account in each, although the tax-free bonus can only be claimed through one of them. You can open an account with as a little as £1.