Last week’s budget was something of an anti-climax. As we all sat waiting for the big fix to aid an increase in mortgage lending and a boost to property sales, only the NewBuy scheme really got a mention. We saw an increase to 7% stamp duty land tax (SDLT) implemented on properties of £2m and an eye watering 15% SDLT for those buying a property over £2m in a company
name. But that was it! Nothing obvious to help get the ball rolling for property sales in the middle sector. I’m also still unsure why the Government are concentrating on New Build
properties for First Time Buyers when there are, allegedly, over one million properties currently sitting empty in the UK and over two million people are sitting as mortgage ‘prisoners’ due to recent changes in lenders mortgage criteria making it nigh on impossible for them to change mortgages. I therefore beg to question where the responsibility may lay for this torrid state of affairs! As we’ve seen recently, lenders are hiking their Standard Variable Rates to existing customers and someone needs to protect those with nowhere else to go, otherwise there are more huge issues yet to come. Watch this space……..
Finally, house prices rose by 0.6% in February after falling for the previous two months, with the average UK house price now at £162,712, according to the Nationwide House Price index.