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North London developer says the cut to stamp duty is a “gamechanger” for first-time buyers

PUBLISHED: 15:33 23 November 2017 | UPDATED: 15:33 23 November 2017

Chancellor Philip Hammond delivers his budget in the House of Commons Picture: PA Wire

Chancellor Philip Hammond delivers his budget in the House of Commons Picture: PA Wire

Abolishing stamp duty for most first-time buyers will make it easier for them to get on the property ladder, according to a north London real estate developer

Chancellor Phillip Hammond’s Budget announcement on stamp duty could prompt a new surge of activity in London’s housing market, according to Fairview New Homes, a real estate developer in north London.

Fairview said the chancellor’s decision to reduce the stamp duty burden for first-time buyers purchasing properties of up to £500,000, would be “a gamechanger for those trying to get on the property ladder in the capital”.

First-time buyers purchasing a house worth up to £500,000 in London and other expensive areas will now pay no stamp duty on the first £300,000, while first-time buyers purchasing a home worth up to £300,000 will pay no stamp duty at all.

Mitchel Allan and his brother, who saw the sale of their very first home go through just after the budget announcement was made yesterday, said: “It’s really helped us out. We will be getting back just over £2000, so we can now put that money into our new property to make it just how we want it to be right away, instead of having to save more money to do so.”

In addition to the stamp duty announcement, Mr Hammond also pledged £44 billion in capital funding for housebuilding and a reform of planning laws in urban areas as the Government aims to build 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s.

Jeremy Gee, director at Fairview New Homes, who are currently building Thirty2 development on Lawn Road in Hampstead, said: “Stamp duty can be a barrier to people entering the housing market, particularly first-time buyers, so this is an extremely significant intervention from the Chancellor which will make it more affordable for people to get on to the property ladder.

But if first-time buyers are looking to purchase a property in areas like Highgate or Hampstead, they are unlikely to benefit from the government’s cut on stamp duty for homes worth up to £500,000. A two-bedroom flat in Hampstead costs £1,005,402 on average, meaning that most first-time buyers looking to get on the property ladder in the area would still find themselves paying an extortionate amount of stamp duty.

Andrew Ellinas, director of north London agents Sandfords said: “The fact that stamp duty has been abolished for first-time buyers up to £300,000 is great news, but there was actually very little in the budget that will help the London property market. I feel that there were a lot of missed opportunities and I am disappointed that there wasn’t a much further reaching reform of the property taxation system.

“The problem in London is that a £500,000 budget won’t buy you very much. Also, there wasn’t any help for homeowners already on the ladder that need to move. The increased stamp duty for properties over £1 million means many in London can’t afford to progress, so where are all these first-time buyer properties going to come from? The London property market is the driving force behind the entire economy and if that stops then it prevents transactions elsewhere.”

To find out more about the government’s proposals for housing, as part of the Autumn Budget 2017, visit gov.uk

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