Philip Hammond has delivered the autumn Budget and as expected, housing was at the centre of his speech. From abolishing stamp duty to planning for more homes, here’s how the chancellor’s statement will affect the property market:
Stamp duty is scrapped for first-time buyers
Stamp duty will be abolished immediately for first-time buyers purchasing properties worth up to £300,000. In London and other expensive areas, the first £300,000 of the cost of a £500,000 home will also be exempt from stamp duty. The chancellor said the change means 80 per cent of all first-time buyers will not pay stamp duty at all.
Thousands of new homes are on the way
The chancellor set a target to build 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s, with a plan to make them more affordable. He confirmed £2 billion will be set aside to fund affordable housing and a further £34 million will go towards construction training models across the country, which will support the workforce needed to meet this ambitious target. A plan for five new garden towns has been proposed for areas of high demand such as the South East.
Further investment in the help to buy scheme
Following an announcement in October, the chancellor confirmed £10 million will be invested in the help to buy loan scheme, which helps people to buy a new home with a 5 per cent deposit. The government hopes to help 135,000 people get on the property ladder.
There’s a new task force to tackle homelessness
In a bid to halve rough sleeping by 2022, and to eliminate it by 2027, the chancellor announced the launch of a Homelessness Reduction Task Force. The government will also invest £28 million in three Housing First pilots in Manchester, Liverpool and the West Midlands, and will provide £20 million to fund schemes which give homeless people access to the private rented sector.
A crack down on empty properties
The government will bring in new laws to give local authorities the power to charge a 100 per cent council tax premium on empty properties. ‘It cannot be right to leave properties empty when so many are desperate for a place to live,’ the chancellor said. The current tax cap is 50 per cent.
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