Following Chancellor George Osborne's delivery of the Autumn Statement - revealing his financial game plan. Ian Westerling, Managing Director and Adam Phelps, Head of Land and New Homes share their comments on the Stamp Duty surcharge and new measures to improve the housing shortage.
Ian Westerling, Managing Director, comments on the three per cent Stamp Duty surcharge: “The announcement that from April 2016, buy to let landlords and second home buyers in England and Wales will have to pay a three per cent surcharge on each stamp duty band is a punch in the stomach to these groups but we don’t expect it to dampen transaction numbers in the long run.
‘In the short-term we expect to see more activity from these groups as they seek to beat the April deadline for the extra charges. Thereafter, while it’s a wholly unwelcome tax, these buyers who, in our market, are more likely to buy an investment property or a second home as a lifestyle choice rather than as a business decision, are likely to budget for the extra charges rather than be deterred from buying altogether.”
Adam Phelps, Head of Land and New Homes, comments on the measures announced to improve housing shortages: “The Government’s commitment to address the dire housing shortage in this country is clear and we welcome the measures announced today to encourage an increase in supply. Whilst much is made of housing prices and shortages in our capital, other regions across the UK are feeling the pressure too. The South West is a good example: according to the National Housing Federation, less than two thirds of the homes the region needs each year are being built. The average house price in the South West is now 11.5 times the average local wage and almost 13 times in rural areas.
'We are pleased to see there will be 8,000 specialist homes for older people and people with disabilities. Given the South West is host to the highest proportion of older people than any other region in England and sees the highest rate of migration from other regions in England, we would hope that the geographic distribution of these homes is appropriately allocated."