This week, Phillip Hammond delivered a budget that was in the majority, well received by the electorate; but what impact will it have on the property market?
One of the first key points to take note of is the threshold for stamp duty relief (for first-time-buyers of shared ownership properties) has been increased to £500,000. Not only that, it has been retrospectively applied to the previous budget meaning that some lucky homeowners will be due a nice little windfall. This can only be seen as a positive to developers, agents and buyers alike, and will no doubt help to prop up the struggling housing market a little more.
The Chancellor has also indicated he will be providing £500M for the Housing Infrastructure Fund to enable a further 650,000 homes to be built. I don’t know about you, but I would seriously like to find out who Phillip Hammonds builder is… £769 per property beats most quotes I’ve had to erect a 25sqft garden shed! Although I find it difficult to marry his figures up, £500M will certainly help rather than hinder.
The other key point from a property perspective is the £1BN assistance being provided to smaller house-builders – this is one of my favourite points from the budget as a whole! For too long now, we have had to endure record breaking bonuses for executives that border on the obscene in what has been a tough time for many in an austerity-hit Britain. Assisting smaller developers will help sites which are forgotten about by the big guns, get the regeneration they so deserve. You will also be lining the pockets of a person trying to put food on the table for their families rather than helping a CEO buy a pied-à-terre in Monaco.
If you’re currently trying to get onto the property ladder, you will know that everything in the budget relates to your affordability criteria. Fortunately, the relief on taxes, the freezing of fuel duty, and the many other benefits, should help the majority to put a little extra aside each month to help turn their dreams into realities…. Unless you run a gambling business, smoke 60-a-day and wine is your choice of tipple.