First Homes Scheme vs. Pocket: Which is the Right Fit for You?

The thought of owning your first home is undoubtedly exciting, but for a lot of people it can also feel daunting (and financially impossible), especially in London’s market. Thankfully, there are lifelines. Initiatives and schemes like Pocket and First Homes are designed to help you on your journey to homeownership by giving you a discount on your first home. The two are somewhat similar and sometimes confused but there are crucial differences, so in this blog we’ll be shedding some light on exactly what Pocket and the First Homes scheme are, and how they compare. It’s important for you to make an informed decision that aligns with your homeownership goals when choosing how to buy, so whether you’re exploring your options or ready to take the leap, this blog is a must-read.

Pocket: West Green Place

What is the First Homes scheme?

The First Homes scheme is a government scheme that offers newly built homes at a minimum discount of 30% of the market price to first-time buyers and key workers in England. To be eligible, you must be a first-time buyer, purchasing the property to live in as your sole residence, and have a combined household income of £80,000 or less (£90,000 in London).

What is Pocket?

Similarly, Pocket provides discounted homes for first-time buyers – exclusively in London. Our properties are specifically designed for Londoners (those who make our vibrant city what it is – we call them city makers) who are struggling to get onto the property ladder. To be eligible, applicants must also meet certain criteria, including being a first-time buyer, having a maximum household income of £90,000, and, sometimes (when a scheme is first launched for sale), living or working in the borough of the development. Pocket offers well-designed, energy-efficient homes sold at 20% less than the market rate.

What’s the difference between Pocket and First Homes?

At first glance, these schemes can look very similar, but there is one key difference: the absence of the First Homes scheme in London. Now, before we jump to conclusions, it’s not that developers aren’t keen to build First Homes in the city, but it’s very difficult for developers to offer homes at First Homes discount levels in London. Pocket, however has a different model which does allow us to offer 20% discounted homes, still at 100% ownership. Rather than simply discounting standard new-build homes (as with First Homes), the Pocket model works because we have developed a  unique and efficient one-bedroom layout designed to suit the needs and lifestyles of those looking to get onto the property ladder in London, which we are able to offer at a discounted price.

Ultimately, the decision between buying using the First Homes Scheme or buying with Pocket depends on individual circumstances, including financial considerations, lifestyle preferences (including whether you want to live in London), and housing needs. By weighing the pros and cons of each option, first-time buyers can make an informed choice that aligns with their homeownership goals.

Visit and get started on your homeownership journey today. By creating your My Pocket account, you can explore the range of 20% discount, 100% ownership homes tailored for you.

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