Autumn budget tax changes could create an urgency to move. Enzo Mora of The Mortgage Brain
By Enzo Mora, CEO and founder of The Mortgage Brain
The Chancellor has finally made his long-awaited Autumn Statement and we will all be picking through the detail to see how we will be personally affected by tax rises, energy costs and council tax increases.
One point for homebuyers and sellers is that the stamp duty savings announced in September will now end on 31 March 2025. While there won't be a rush of people bringing forward their plans there is a bit more urgency for those trying to get on the ladder or looking to move up it in the next few years and could, as the chancellor said, create incentives to support the housing market by boosting transactions.
Savvy first-time-buyers still keen to make savings to get on the ladder
The phasing out of stamp duty savings will mean that first-time-buyers will have less time to save their deposits although there are a number of affordable lending options on the market already to help these buyers such as Deposit Unlock and Generation Home.
Our advisers are taking calls about these products and are fully up to date with all the details. Research from Rightmove shows that first-time buyers are already cutting back on going out and using less gas and electricity so they can still save up for a deposit. Holidays, food shopping and streaming service subscriptions have also taken a hit.
Price dips means more competitively priced property
Meanwhile, property asking prices fell by an average of £4,159 (-1.1%) in November to £366,999 says Rightmove. However, the data shows the slight drop is usual for this time of year and is in line with the five years before the pandemic.
One reason for the drop is because sellers will price more competitively to increase their chances of finding a buyer before the New Year. But even with this dip, the average house price is still 7% higher than this time in 2021. Strong house price growth over the last two years is because demand for homes far outweighed the number of homes for sale so pushed prices to an all-time high.
Lender helps homeowners go green
While we'd all like to keep our energy bills as low as possible, Barclay's has found that three in four of their mortgage holders say they cannot afford the changes they want to make in the next five years to enjoy savings and believe their mortgage lender should support them. So to stop the gap, Barclays has launched a pilot for new and existing residential mortgage customers to get £2,000 to help them make their homes more energy efficient by installing measures such as new insulation, heat pumps or solar panels.
This ties in nicely with a Santander survey of estate agents which found that 85% report a growing interest in energy efficient properties in the last 12 months. Buyers will pay on average 15.5% more for property with a high Energy Performance Certificate rating. We've also seen an increased number of green mortgage products from lenders. We're acutely aware of the need for our customers to make savings at this time which is why our advisers are fully trained to deliver the best affordable deals.
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