Help to Buy Incentive


The Help to Buy (HTB) incentive is a scheme for first-time property buyers. It will help you with the deposit you need to buy or build a new house or apartment. You must buy or build the property to live in as your home.

Where you meet the required conditions, you will receive a refund of:


The refund will be from the four tax years prior to when you make your application. The refund will not include any refunds you have already claimed.

Who can claim the Help to Buy (HTB) incentive?

To claim HTB, you must:

  • be a first-time buyer at the time of the claim
  • buy or build a new property between 01 January 2017 and 31 December 2024
  • live in the property as your main home for five years after you buy or build it
  • be tax compliant if you are self-assessed you must also have tax clearance.

To qualify, you must not have previously bought or built a house or apartment, either on your own or jointly with any other person. If you are buying or building the new property with other people, they must also be first-time buyers. If you have inherited, or have been gifted, a property, depending on the circumstances, it may not affect your eligibility.

Approved developers and contractors

The contractor you are purchasing your home from must be approved by Revenue. You can check the list of approved developers and contractors to make sure that your developer or contractor is approved.

What type of property qualifies?

To qualify for HTB, the property that you build or buy must be:

  • your home
  • newly built with the construction subject to Value Added Tax (VAT) in Ireland.

The property must never have been used, or have been suitable to use, as a residential home. If the property was non-residential, but has been converted for residential use, it may qualify for HTB. If you buy or build the property as an investment, it does not qualify for HTB.

Purchase value

The purchase value of a new build means the full Open Market Value (OMV) of the property. This is usually the price you purchased it for, unless you paid a reduced price for the property. The full OMV is the purchase value used for the purposes of HTB, in all cases. The purchase value of the property must be €500,000 or less to qualify for HTB.

Approved valuation

If you are self-building a property, the approved valuation is the valuation of the property approved by the lender at the time you took out the mortgage. The approved valuation must be €500,000 or less to qualify for HTB.


You must take out your mortgage on the property with a qualifying lender. This loan must be used only for buying or building the property. The loan must be at least 70% of the purchase value of the property or 70% of the approved valuation. This is known as the loan to value ratio.

You are allowed to have a guarantor on the loan. The guarantor does not need to be a first-time purchaser.

How much can you claim?

The amount that you can claim is the lesser of:

  • €30,000
  • 10% of the purchase price of a new home or of the approved valuation of the property, in the case of self-builds
  • the amount of Income Tax and Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) you have paid for the four years before you make your application.

The maximum payment is €30,000 per property. This cap applies regardless of how many people enter into a contract to buy a house.

Universal Social Charge (USC) or Pay Related Social Insurance (PRSI) are not considered when calculating how much you can claim.

For further details please see Help to Buy (HTB) Part 15-01-46 and Summary Guide for Help to Buy Applicants.

Amount of relief under the original HTB scheme

The amount that you can claim is the lesser of:

  • €20,000
  • 5% of the purchase value or approved valuation
  • the amount of IT and DIRT you have paid for the four years prior to when you make your application.

The maximum payment is €20,000. This cap applies regardless of how many people enter a contract to purchase the qualifying property.

USC or PRSI are not taken into account when calculating how much you can claim.

How will the refund be paid?

If you buy a new build after 1 January 2017, the refund will be paid to the contractor.

If you self-build the property after 1 January 2017, the refund will be paid to a bank account you hold with your loan provider.

What do you need to do before you apply?

Before you apply, you must be registered for either:

If you pay tax through PAYE

Before you apply for HTB, you must submit an Income Tax (IT) Return for each year you wish to select as a refund year. A refund year must be within the four years prior to when you make the application. Any outstanding tax due for the selected refund years must be paid in full prior to submitting your claim.

If you were registered for another tax in any part of the refund years you are applying for, you must have a Tax Clearance Certificate (TCC).

Use myAccount to submit an IT Return for the relevant years. Online IT returns are pre-populated with your pay and tax details.

Please do not make your HTB application until:

  • you have submitted an IT Return for each year you want to select as a refund year
  • you have received a Statement of Liability for all years for which you submitted an IT Return
  • there is no outstanding tax due in any refund year
  • you have received your TCC, if applicable.

Failure to do so could result in delays to your application.

If you are self-employed

If you are self-assessed, you must be fully tax compliant and have tax clearance. You must have filed your income tax returns and paid all the tax that you owe for any years where you were self-employed. Use Revenue Online Service (ROS) to submit your Form 11.

Selecting years for refund

The refund of IT and Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) is based on the four years immediately prior to the year of application, starting with the earliest year.

In order to select a year in your HTB application, you must:

have submitted your annual IT Return for that year
have received:
your Statement of Liability from Revenue for that year, if you are a PAYE taxpayer. The Statement of Liabilities is not issued until after your return has been submitted.
a Letter of Acknowledgement of your self-assessment, if you are a self-assessed taxpayer.

How do you apply for Help to Buy (HTB)?

There are three stages to the online process:

  • the application stage
  • the claim stage.
  • verification stage.

Application stage

Before starting your application, please ensure you are tax compliant. You can apply as:

  • an individual
  • part of a group.

Use myAccount or Revenue Online Service (ROS) to apply. Complete the declaration and select the years you wish to use for a refund.

If you are tax compliant, your application will be approved, and you will be given:

  • an Application Number
  • a summary of the maximum amount you can claim
  • an Access Code (sent through MyEnquiries).

Keep a safe note of these numbers, you may need to provide them to your:

  • lender
  • contractor or solicitor at the verification stage.


Even if your application is approved, all conditions of the Help to Buy (HTB) scheme must be satisfied for the claim to be approved.

A valid claim must be submitted before the application expires, otherwise your application will have to be resubmitted. Applications made between:

  • 1 January and 30 September automatically expire on 31 December of the same year
  • 1 October and 31 December automatically expire on 31 March of the following year.

Lenders and contractors can use Revenue’s Mortgage Query Tool to check your potential maximum HTB refund.

Claim stage

You can make your claim once you have either:

  • signed the contract for your home
  • drawn down the first part of the mortgage if you are self-building.

Login to HTB through myAccount or Revenue’s Online Service (ROS)and complete the following steps below.

Step 1

Upload evidence of your mortgage and the following information about your application:

  • if you are buying a home: a copy of the signed contract
  • if you are building a home:
    • proof of the drawdown of the first part of the mortgage and
    • a copy of the valuation report from your lender.

Step 2

You will be asked to confirm details about the:

  • property
  • purchase price
  • date of completion
  • mortgage
  • amount of deposit already paid.

If you are applying with other people you will also need to confirm the portion of the refund to be refunded to each person. If you are self-building, you will need to provide the BIC and IBAN of the loan bank account.

Once you have submitted your claim you will be provided with a claim reference.

Please ensure that you have carefully checked all the information you input before you sign and submit the claim.

If any of the information you have provided is incorrect, you must:

  • cancel your claim
  • submit a new claim with the correct information

This must be done before you continue to step 3.

Verification stage

Before you receive any refund, the information you have provided will need to be verified by the:

  • qualifying contractor, if you are purchasing a property
  • your solicitor, if you are self-building.

When you have submitted your claim, advise your eligible verifier and provide them with your:

  • Claim Number (issued after the claim stage)
  • Access Code (issued when your application was approved).

The refund that you receive is limited to 10% (5% under the original HTB scheme) of the:

  • purchase value
  • approved valuation.

This may mean that it is different to the maximum relief amount advised at the application stage.

Information for applicants

There are two types of applicants who can apply for the HTB scheme:

  • first-time purchaser applicants
  • first-time self-build applicants.

Further information on this process is available in the Summary Guide for applicants.

Points of Contact

Contact Information
Applicants  Use MyEnquiries in myAccount, if you are an employee and pay tax through PAYE

 Revenue’s Online Service (ROS), if you are self-employed.

Revenue Website All information regarding HTB Scheme in this document is taken from Revenue Website

Info for Applicants


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