When the removal of stamp duty for first time buyers purchasing property at less than £300,000 was announced in the November of 2017 budget, there was agreement that the property market would be impacted on. Of course, there wasn’t agreement about what the impact would be, but there was a feeling that the market would change.
At the time of the announcement, the Conservative Government said the stamp duty cut would provide help for first-time buyers. Immediately after the announcement, the Office for Budget Responsibility, the OBR, suggested that this cut could lead to higher prices. This means many people are watching the property market closely to see which prediction proves correct.
Some parties believe the stamp duty cut will be positive for first-time buyers
You may think that it is too early to make a judgment call on the effectiveness of the stamp duty cut but major estate agent Countrywide claims to have seen a positive difference in their business. It has been claimed that the company has experienced a 10% rise in walk-ins from first-time buyers. This is in comparison to their year on year figures and Countrywide also claim that this has been their biggest increase since 2013. These are good figures, but you would be correct to say that interest doesn’t necessarily translate into sales.
To counterbalance the viewpoint of Countrywide, the Royal Institute for Chartered Surveyors, Rics, questioned their surveyors in December last year and found that 86% of respondents said that there was no noticeable increase in the volume of first-time buyers who were interested in buying property. Surveyors were also asked if they expected the stamp duty cut to have a positive impact on the market and 66% of respondents said no. Only 12% of respondents said they believed the stamp duty cut would lead to an increase in first-time buyers getting on to the property ladder.
People want to know what is coming next in property market
It is only natural that certain parties will have had expectations on what impact these changes will have on their business and it is too early to say if anyone will be proved right or wrong but given the level of interest in the property market, you can see why there is a determination to make predictions and look ahead.
The fact that the move may still be of more benefit to existing property owners than prospective buyers is an interesting aspect and one that means a wider proportion of the population will stay in touch with this aspect of the property market.
At Geoffrey Matthew, we know everyone wants to know what is coming next in the property market, but without more information, it would be impossible to say what impact the stamp duty cut will have on the market. However, the more informed you are, the more likely it will be that you make a smart decision, and we are more than happy to offer you help and assistance with whatever your next property move is.