Brian Murphy, Head of Lending for Mortgage Advice Bureau comments:
“In an Autumn windfall, First Time Buyers just benefitted from a very welcome boost to their deposit savings, courtesy of Chancellor Hammond. Whilst this is great news for those taking their first steps on the ladder, and doubtless will inject a bit of impetus into a plateauing market, in the short term this could actually have the effect of creating a demand for properties that fall within the exempted values which may further stymie buyers at entry level, as although today’s move may enable First Time Buyers to purchase a home more quickly, they still need the stock available to buy in the first place.
Of course, the wider package of measures to get the country building at the required levels is welcome news, both for consumers and the industry, as it will ease pressure on housing supply as well as stimulate jobs and growth. But that’s a long term plan. What we need now are immediate measures to tackle growing pressure on affordable housing and the private rental sector. Whilst the former was acknowledged in the plans laid out for immediate action, the latter wasn’t, other than a consultation in the new year with regards longer tenancy agreements, and it would be perilous to underplay the importance of private landlords in helping to tackle the housing crisis.
We will await the result of Sajid Javid’s consultation with the industry with regards the current property buying and selling process, along with the announcement today into the practice of ‘land banking’ with interest, both of which should see further announcements in the new year in terms of how these very different yet equally important pieces of the whole housing jigsaw fit together. However for now, those who are currently marketing their home for £300k or less outside London, and £500k or less within the Capital may, indirectly benefit from an unseasonally busy market in the lead up to Christmas.”