Stamp Duty – Has anything really changed for first-time buyers?
Sounds like its’ great news for first-time buyers across the country! Now, instead of paying Stamp Duty for homes valued at £125,000 or above, Philip Hammond recently announced that this threshold has now been moved up to homes at £300,000+. At face value this sounds like it could potentially save first-time home buyers oodles of cash, along with spurring young people to get on to the property ladder. As with any political announcement, however, there seems to be more than meets the eye with this agreement. So what is the reality of the situation?
Honestly, who benefits?
Not that the change in Stamp Duty isn’t a nice incentive, but it is fair to say that for the average consumer, a £300,000 house is typically seen as quite upmarket. Event the original £125,000 threshold would have been out of reach for many who wish to buy their own home. Unfortunately, statistically there are only around 3000 people who are actually affected by the change. Realistically, it has been argued that for the vast majority, the change in Stamp Duty tax will have absolutely no effect on either their decision to buy a first home, or even their ability to do so.
What is the average saving?
As with any incentive of this nature, the savings made are relative to the cost of the home, and the cost of the deposit for that home. As you could have probably already guessed, if you want to see a real difference or saving then you should look to the South. But as you will also already know, the disparity in house prices between the North and the South is getting wider than ever.
London homes have always been significantly more expensive than homes further up the country, but the sad truth is that there is little to no notable savings for northern home buyers. Using Yorkshire as an example, a first-time buyer would be looking at an average of around £20 reduction to the overall deposit cost. Look here to compare mortgages and home insurance for both the North and the South, and decide where your best savings are being made!
Although it may not seem like it will make a difference to first-timers when it comes to buying a home, but that does not mean that it is not worth appreciating a positive public change when you see one. Even if there are very few people being affected by the change, there is no negative impact that can so far be foreseen, and people are saving money! It can be difficult to take things at face value sometimes, and although it is a bit of a translucent move politically, one can only hope it inspires further change.
If you are a first time buyer and want to save more money then why not try our Home Conveyancing comparison which will help you compare the costs of solicitors.