First-time buyer increase is great news

Why we should all be cheering the boost in first-time buyers as the market picks up pace this spring.

The Chancellor set out to help more people get on the property ladder in his 2017 Budget and he used his Spring Statement to announce some 60,000 first-time buyers have already benefitted from his stamp duty change. The news has been welcomed across The Robinson Jackson Group.

"The market is at its best when more people are able to get on the property ladder and affordability enables others to move up the property chain," says Robert Wright, Managing Partner at our Sydenham office. "When first timers are buying, it sets the wheels in motion for everyone. We see enquiries, viewings and the number of offers rise, and transactions pick up pace. First-time buyers are having an immediate impact across London and Kent. We know they're looking for all types of properties as our 25 offices are registering new people every day."

Now is an excellent time for first-time buyers to explore home ownership. Mortgages are still at some of their most affordable levels ever, with data from UK Finance revealing 24,500 new first-time buyer mortgages completed during January 2018 - 7% more than in the same month in 2017. Our in-branch financial advisors have access to attractive home loans, so book an appointment today to discover what you can afford.

Help to Buy is also assisting people take their first step into home ownership. Since November 2017, one in four new build purchases has been bought using the initiative. The scheme sees the Government give purchasers an equity loan of 20%, enabling them to contribute a smaller deposit of just 5%. In London, the Help to Buy figures are even higher. Half of all brand new home sales are now subsidized by the scheme, with the equity loan ratio in the capital increased to 40% to reflect London's higher house prices.

There's also the Government's Help to Buy ISA - a savings-matching product developed specifically to reward first-time buyers saving for a deposit - you can read the full ISA details here.

In case you missed the announcement last year, stamp duty for first-time buyers has been abolished on all properties worth up to £300,000 and on the first £300,000 of properties worth up to £500,000 in high value areas, such as London (read the full story here). If you think you may be eligible for a stamp duty free purchase, get in touch with your local office. They will talk through your circumstances and tell you how much stamp duty you may pay, or give you the great news that there's no stamp duty to pay at all!

If you already own a property and would like to know how the market is changing where you live, contact us today for friendly, local advice and a free, no obligation valuation.

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