Spring Budget: Broken housing market “side-stepped”

The Spring Budget has received criticism that it completely side-stepped the housing market.

Delivered today (08/03/17), the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s Budget included a reduction in borrowing, £2billion going towards adult social care and a further £425 million being invested in the NHS. However, Philip Hammond did not mention the housing market.

Commenting on the issue was Doug Crawford. The CEO of My Home Move highlighted the various issues the market may face as well as the importance of considering the varying needs of all buyers.

“This is a budget which made no mention of the housing market. The bold statement made a month ago that Britain’s housing market is broken, has today been side-stepped.

“Last year the Chancellor’s predecessor made sweeping changes to the tax system for those looking to purchase additional homes, a move the Government hoped would slow the buy-to-let market in favour of first-time buyers. And while buy-to-let activity has now halved, and first-time buyer activity has begun to increase*, what hasn’t been addressed is that buy-to-let landlords aren’t big corporations, but individuals making a living, to help support their own families.

“And come the 6th April, landlords will suffer a further blow as changes to mortgage interest relief come into force; coupled with increases in National Insurance for the self-employed announced today – an estimated one in five landlords will be affected**. The fear being that any additional costs will end up being passed on to their tenants; meaning rents will go up, while their ability to save for a deposit for their first home, will go down.

“What we need is a property market that works for every kind of buyer including the Government’s ‘ordinary working families’. By putting the brakes on the buy-to-let sector all the Government has done is caused a problem further along the housing chain. In the future, we urge the Government to look at the issues as a whole, in order to fix its broken housing market.”

Today's Conveyancer