The ideal time to purchase your first home

News Article

For many years, reports have dominated the media suggesting that the UK is suffering from a so-called housing crisis – with younger Britons increasingly struggling to secure a place on the nation’s property ladder.

However, recent data suggests otherwise – and changes to Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) introduced at the end of last year now provide hope for future would-be homeowners.

“Following important SDLT cuts introduced in November last year, there has never been a better opportunity for young Britons to save big when purchasing their first home,” says Caroline McCullagh, property and conveyancing expert with Palmers Solicitors.

Towards the end of 2017, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, abolished SDLT for first-time buyers on all homes valued up to £300,000 as part of his Autumn Budget announcements.

“This means that new homeowners can potentially save thousands of pounds when purchasing their first home,” Caroline explains.

Evidence has already surfaced suggesting that the changes are proving hugely beneficial.

Towards the end of January, high street lender Halifax published data suggesting that the number of first-time homeowners in the UK had soared to a 10-year high of 359,000.

Since the changes were first announced, critics of the Chancellor’s big move have voiced concerns that the Government has failed to address the growing issue of would-be homeowners hoping to get on the property ladder in expensive locations such as London and South East England, where prices are considerably higher than in other parts of the country.

However, Caroline explains how even those first-time buyers who wish to purchase a property valued at more than £300,000 can still benefit from the changes.

She said: “During the Budget, the Chancellor also introduced a substantial SDLT cut for first-time buyers purchasing residential property up to £500,000.

“Homebuyers in this situation will now no longer pay SDLT on the first £300,000 of the property’s value – which can still make for significant savings,” she said.

Palmers Solicitors advise on all aspects of Property Law. For more information, please contact Caroline McCullagh or another member of our South Woodham Ferrers Property team at enquiries@palmerslaw.co.uk.