Today the chancellor, Phillip Hammond, has unveiled the autumn budget and it’s announced some pretty big plans for the property market moving forward.
Our Managing and Financial Director, Peter Barlow, reflects on the recent changes enforced by the new budget and what that means for Britain’s property market.
“One of the main challenges which has been facing the housing market, therefore house buyers per se, over the last few years has been the lack of available properties to buy. Simple supply and demand economics has meant that we have seen prices increase in every area where we collect and analyse the data.
The announcements today have the sound of a Government looking to stimulate the small housebuilders back into action. Not only are they talking about introducing new money and loan guarantees, to help small builders with their working capital requirements, but they have also talked about tackling the inertia in some planning departments to grant planning permission. More permissions, more money being made available, this should all add up to more new homes being built.
For the vast majority of First Time Buyers, the previous changes to Stamp Duty have already taken this tax out of their transaction, so today’s announcement, that ALL First Time Buyers will be exempt from Stamp Duty for purchases up to £300,000, will have fewer people cheering for it in Greater Manchester than in London. That said, there are lots of places in Greater Manchester where this change will benefit many buyers and again, that has got to be a good thing.
— HM Treasury (@hmtreasury) November 22, 2017
There was also some very positive news for renters as well. The Government will conduct a review into the legal challenges which prevent Landlords from granting longer tenancies to their Tenants, currently capped at 12 months. Longer tenancies gives tenants greater certainty and can lead to a better quality of life.
Finally, there was an announcement that empty properties would be subject to a 100% council tax premium and that there would a review to understand why so many planning applications, which have been granted permission, have not been built out.
I feel very positive about the commitment to building a net new 300,000 homes per annum by 2020, with the above measures demonstrating that the Government have really thought about the “HOW” to do, after first considering the “WHAT” to do, but this is all going to take time to have an impact.
What will help now is the overall positive sentiment of the budget, it was a budget of confidence to give confidence. Availability of houses can be switched on very quickly, if people have the confidence that they can find the property they want and can get the mortgage they need. We know the mortgages are available so we are looking forward to seeing many more people back in the housing market in 2018.”
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