In the latest Budget, Philip Hammond unveiled a quite extensive plan of expenditure for the government, pointing funds in the direction of the NHS, policing and defences, education, high street revival and general maintenance up and down the country.
On the subject of housing, though, the chancellor only touched upon speculated topics and anything concerning landlords, which is neither in their favour nor to their detriment – read on to explore both sides.
What’s looking good for landlords?
1. Another change is a £675m Future High Street Fund which will be put towards the redevelopment of high streets which should see popularity of high street areas rising back up. This will benefit landlords with property in and around the high streets as new businesses and local amenities drive economic growth in the area and with it rents and demand.
What missed the mark for landlords?
With changes to tenant fees announced at the Budget in 2016, it’s surprising that the Chancellor didn’t touch upon how this has developed and when this will be implemented, leaving landlords in the dark about these changes and how they can prepare for them.
2. Landlords can breathe a sigh of relief at avoiding any more tax or regulatory changes in the recent Budget Statement, except for the only change to them which is stipulating that from April 2020 lettings relief will be reformed so it is only available when the owner and tenant are in shared occupation. Currently, if you just had one lodger this was unaffected anyway, so the change is going to affect owners with two or more tenants.
Robert Nichols, CEO at Portico, commented on these changes, saying, “The new restrictions on Lettings Relief is a further punishment to hard working individuals who have chosen to invest sensibly in residential property. Limiting Lettings Relief to properties where the owner is in shared occupancy with the tenant is as good as removing it in its entirety.”
Anything else housing related?
3. Stamp Duty was abolished in the 2017 Budget for first-time buyers looking to purchase a property up to the value of £300,000. This has been opened up even further to include shared ownership properties up to the value of £500,000 which is another great move to allow more movement onto the property ladder for first-time buyers.
4. The Chancellor also announced a £500m Housing Infrastructure Fund which will look to see 650,000 new homes developed in the country, with 13,000 of these for social housing.
5. Lastly, it was announced that 500 neighbourhoods will have access to a Neighbourhood Planning System which will create housing developments which will offer a discount to locals buying the properties. This should see a growth in local investment, instead of foreign investment leaving homes empty and pushing locals out of being able to purchase affordable housing.
Overall, the Autumn Statement covered many topics but housing wasn’t top of the agenda this time. Focus seemed to be around building up neighbourhoods and communities once more which would suggest that once this has been achieved then attention may turn back to housing. Let’s hold tight until 2019!
Want to find out more?
If you’re a landlord trying to decide which way to go with your property portfolio in 2019, why not attend our landlord seminar in November to find out more up-to-date insights, landlord case studies and predictions for 2019. Click the link above for more information or to buy your ticket now.