In the news this week, the latest round up
In the news this week, we look at why first time buyer demand has soared, how stamp duty could bring the market to a halt and 10 ways to cut inheritance tax.
August 7, 2019
First-time buyer news, demand soars… but so do deposits – Mortgage Finance Gazette
In the news this week, Mortgage Finance Gazette reveals that the average first-time buyer deposits have soared by 17% in the last year. However demand for mortgages from this group has remained high.
Data from Experian’s Credit Barometer revealed the average people said they had saved for their deposit in July 2019 was £30,945 – a hike of nearly a fifth on the typical £26,498 put by in July 2018.
Experian said the statistics, which were published just after the Bank of England announced the base rate would remain at 0.75%, suggested those looking for a mortgage were having to save an increasing amount to secure the first home.
But this factor appears not have hindered demand. Indeed, Experian’s figures showed first-time buyers were responsible for over half of all mortgage searches through its services in July.
Amir Goshtai, managing director of Experian Marketplace and Affinity, said “Low interest rates and falling house prices in certain areas mean now is an optimum time for first-time buyers and home movers alike to make sure they get the best mortgage deal.”
Home buyers ‘move faster in Scotland but slower in London’ – BBC News
In the news this week the BBC reports that Scotland has replaced London as the fastest place for a seller to find a buyer for their home, figures suggest.
In 2014, it took 36 days in London on average to secure a buyer, but this rose to 60 days by last year, according to property portal Rightmove.
In contrast, the average time to secure a buyer fell from 66 days to 41 days over the same period in Scotland.
The figures, compiled for the BBC, show that the market for flats has slowed amid debate over leasehold rules.
10 ways to cut inheritance tax – Saga
Latest figures in the news this week show that the relatives of 94% of people who die do not pay Inheritance Tax (IHT). Out of 591,000 deaths in 2018/19 just 22,000 estates paid it – that is just one in 26.
So it probably won’t happen to you.
According to Saga this week, you can leave £325,000 without any tax being due. If you own your home and leave it to a child or grandchild that amount is boosted by £150,000 this year and from April 2020 the two together will be £500,000.
People fear inheritance tax, but there is no need. Follow these ten tips from Saga to cut inheritance tax, and also find out what you shouldn’t do
Stamp duty news – uncertainty could bring market ‘to a grinding halt’ says online boss – Estate Agent Today
Speculation surrounding whether Boris Johnson will honour his pledge to reduce stamp duty risks bringing the housing market “to a grinding halt” warns the head of an online estate agency.
The chief executive of HouseSimple, Sam Mitchell, says of the rumour: “It might help first-time buyers or those moving up the chain but it runs the risk of bringing the property ladder to a grinding halt as those at the top end of the ladder will be deterred from ever downsizing to free up larger homes.”
Johnson made a number of broad pledges during his Conservative leadership campaign about the need to reform SDLT, but whilst he has made a number of spending and other commitments since taking office he has so far remained silent on stamp duty.
12 of the UK’s greenest regions revealed – House Beautiful
From low-emission buses to cycling, these are the places doing their part to help the planet.
Interested in finding out where the greenest spots are in the UK? A study conducted by Migrate has ranked the UK’s local authorities by their CO2 emissions per capita to uncover the nation’s greenest places. And it may surprise you…
London is the UK’s greenest region with the lowest per capita emissions. This is thanks to its ultra-low emission zones, low-emission buses and taxis, which have all helped to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality in the city.
Also in the study, Hackney came in as the third greenest in the whole of the UK, because of its schemes that encourage walking, cycling and electric vehicles.