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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Chancellor fails to deal with Britain’s ‘broken’ housing market

Yesterday’s rather low-key Budget statement failed to mention the housing market as the government continues to bury its head on the sand rather than address Britain’s housing crisis, according to a leading conveyancing specialist.

Doug Crawford, CEO of My Home Move, insisted that the “bold statement” made by the government in the housing white paper last month that Britain’s housing market is “broken” was yesterday “side-stepped” by the chancellor Philip Hammond during his Budget announcement.

Although Hammond did not spring any unwelcome surprises by introducing fresh property taxes, he did announce measures to clampdown on those setting up companies to minimise tax burdens which could have an adverse impact on buy-to-let landlords who are planning to soften the blow of buy-to-let tax changes by setting up limited companies in an effort to reduce tax exposure.

The chancellor also failed to reverse the previous chancellor George Osborne’s deeply unpopular tax reforms, including the introduction of the 3% stamp duty surcharge last year and the crack down on mortgage interest tax relief from next month.

Crawford said: “Last year the chancellor’s predecessor made sweeping changes to the tax system for those looking to purchase additional homes, a move the government hoped would slow the buy-to-let market in favour of first-time buyers. And while buy-to-let activity has now halved, and first-time buyer activity has begun to increase, what hasn’t been addressed is that buy-to-let landlords aren’t big corporations, but individuals making a living, to help support their own families.

“And come the 6th April, landlords will suffer a further blow as changes to mortgage interest relief come into force; coupled with increases in National Insurance  for the self-employed announced yesterday – an estimated one in five landlords will be affected.

“The fear being that any additional costs will end up being passed on to their tenants; meaning rents will go up, while their ability to save for a deposit for their first home, will go down.”

He added: “By putting the brakes on the buy-to-let sector all the government has done is caused a problem further along the housing chain.

“In the future, we urge the government to look at the issues as a whole, in order to fix its broken housing market.”

  • Daniel Latto

    I'm surprised anyone actually thought the chancellor was going to do anything positive or anyone anywhere other than his chums in the Government.

    That's not the world we live in I'm afraid.

  • Mark Wilson

    I agree Daniel, i never understand the expectation of buy to let landlords. Government does not want to help nor subsidize the sector. They have a clear policy.

  • G romit

    There's nothing left after George Osborne's hatchet job on the PRS.

    Would you let a roadsweeper operate on your brain? then why do we let politicians meddle in the housing market?

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