The 2018 Autumn Budget included a range of measures focused on the housing market, designed to help First-Time Buyers as well as improving the supply of new homes in the UK.
Here’s our rundown of the changes.
With immediate effect, the Stamp Duty relief for first time buyers has been extended to exempt those purchasing a shared ownership property valued up to £500,000 in England and Northern Ireland.
This change will also benefit recent buyers as it will be backdated to 22nd November 2017 (the date of the last budget when first time buyer relief was originally announced), so that those eligible will be able to claim a refund.
The Chancellor also announced the publication in January 2019 of a consultation regarding a 1% surcharge on Stamp Duty for overseas buyers purchasing property in England and Northern Ireland.
Help to Buy
The government has been under some recent pressure to confirm the future of the Help to Buy Equity Loan scheme, which is due to end in 2021.
The Chancellor has now confirmed that a new version of the scheme will be introduced in April 2021 and will run for 2 years, extending Help to Buy to March 2023. The new scheme will only be available to first time buyers, and the £600,000 price cap will be replaced with regional price caps, linked to the expected average house price for a first time buyer in that area.
In a bid to improve housing supply, the Chancellor announced an additional £500 million boost to the Housing Infrastructure Fund, bringing it to a total of £5.5 billion, with the aim of unlocking a further 650,000 homes.
New partnerships with housing associations in England will also create 13,000 new homes and funds will be made available to help redevelop empty shops and commercial premises into residential property as part of the Future High Streets Fund.
As expected, a lift on the borrowing cap for local councils wanting to build new homes was confirmed.
Buy to Let
Landlords were largely left alone although the government announced its intention to alter lettings relief from April 2020, so that it’s only applicable where the owner shares the property with the tenant.
What did the Budget hold for the Housing Market?