Law News

‘A focus on helping those not yet on the housing ladder’ – Conservative Party manifesto reaction

Em Morley - November 29, 2019

Milton Rodosthenous, Build to Rent expert and director of online auction service LetsBid Property, has shared his comments on the Conservative Party manifesto, ahead of the next General Election.

Rodosthenous says: “The Conservatives’ plans to levy a 3% Stamp Duty surcharge for non-UK tax residents will receive a mixed response from the property industry. 

“However, most people will agree that it is a surprise to see the additional Stamp Duty increased to 3% from the initial 1% proposed over a year ago.

“Additional Stamp Duty for overseas investors will represent a positive change for domestic buyers as there may be less competition for homes and price growth for certain types of properties could plateau.

“That said, a policy like this could have implications for the high-end of the housing market, particularly in London.

“Any market problems caused by additional stamp duty for overseas buyers could be alleviated by wider stamp duty reform, details of which are currently lacking in depth.

“Meanwhile, Boris Johnson’s plans to introduce lifetime fixed mortgages for first-time buyers could represent a more all-encompassing and effective strategy of helping people to take their first steps on the property ladder compared to existing policies such as Help to Buy and Shared Ownership.

“It seems the Conservatives have placed further focus on helping those not yet on the housing ladder with their Lifetime Rental Deposit policy, which could help tenants to save more cash towards buying a home thanks to lower upfront moving costs.”

“If Boris Johnson is elected, his focus will be on resolving the Brexit impasse which could help to re-energise the property market. A continued focus on reforming the homebuying and selling process with policies such as Reservation Agreements and regulating property agents could also help to speed up transactions and build long-term confidence in the market.”