The final Budget before the UK leaves the EU has been delivered this week, with the aim of preparing us for a “new chapter” for the economy.
There were plenty of new measures implemented, many of which could affect you and your finances, so it’s worth taking a look at the full Autumn Budget on the Government’s website – we’ve included a link at the end of this blog.
The measures, however, that interested us most, were the new changes around housing and first-time buyers.
You may recall that in last year’s Autumn Budget, stamp duty was abolished for first-time buyers purchasing a home worth up to £300,000. This was a step in the right direction, but it unfortunately excluded buyers of shared-ownership homes.
Well, in this year’s Budget the help for first-time buyers has been expanded on, and we’re delighted to say that stamp duty land tax has now been abolished for first-time buyers of shared ownership homes!
It will apply to all shared ownership homes worth up to £500,000, and – the icing on the cake – it will also be backdated for anyone who has bought a shared ownership home since the last Autumn Budget, which was on 22nd November 2017. So, if you’ve bought a shared ownership home in that time, you will now be eligible for a refund.
This has been applauded across the sector as a welcome move for those hoping to make their first steps onto the housing ladder.
Kevin Roberts, Director of the Mortgage Club at financial services firm Legal & General, said the move showed the government ‘clearly recognises the benefits’ of shared ownership and he hoped the announcement would raise awareness of the scheme.
Other measures for housing included a scheme to help councils develop more homes in High Streets, and a funding boost for local councils, which should help to build 650,000 more homes.
View the full Budget 2018 here.