It was hailed as a Budget that was going to bring big changes and reforms to Britain’s housing market. Property certainly featured prominently in the Autumn Budget, with the Chancellor pledging a range of initiatives set to impact the industry.
From the elimination of stamp duty for first-time buyers on properties up to £300,000, to a 100% council tax premium on empty homes, there was plenty in the highly-anticipated Budget to impact the sector and provide food for thought among commentators.
Agent Wow takes a look at how the property industry has reacted to Chancellor Philip Hammond’s Autumn Budget 2017…
Paresh Raja, CEO of bridging specialist MFS
“After an underwhelming Spring Budget that completely overlooked the property market, this time around the Chancellor has at least announced some reforms that will benefit homebuyers. While stamp duty has been cut for first-time homebuyers, the amount of money this will save prospective buyers is limited – the average first-time buyer spends £200,000 on a property; abolishing stamp duty will save them just £1,500.
“Importantly, homeowners looking to upgrade to another property still face the heavy financial burden of stamp duty, which will ultimately deter them from moving house. I fear this will have significant implications in the longer term, decreasing the number of people moving from their first property purchase, and thereby reducing the number of properties available for first-time homebuyers.”
Fareed Nabir, CEO and founder of online lettings app LetBritain
“Having acknowledged the growing number of Brits stuck in rental accommodation, it’s pleasing to see the Government deliver a Budget heavily geared towards the lettings market. With 7.2 million households likely to be in the rental market by 2025, the Chancellor has seized the opportunity to continue with the recent wave of reforms by offering tax incentives for landlords guaranteeing tenancies of at least 12 months.
This should hopefully have a trickledown effect on rental prices, offering more financial manoeuvrability for tenants saving to buy their own house – something the Chancellor has made easier – while also providing additional security for renters.”
Leon Ifayemi, CEO and co-founder, SPCE
“The property industry is primed and ready for a tech revolution. But, while proptech in the UK is thriving, it was a shame to see the Chancellor do little to seize the opportunity of the Budget to further fuel growth in this area.
“There was a significant focus on first-time buyers and affordable homes, but it would have been encouraging to see the Government adopt a more progressive approach to tackling issues that remain rife in the property sector as a whole.
“Too many elements of the property market – for buyers, seller, agents, landlords and renters alike – are slow, cumbersome and outdated. New tech can modernise processes and overcome all manner of challenges; the Chancellor should have acknowledged this and done more to support proptech firms in their bid to disrupt traditional practices.”