Direct Property News

April 4, 2017
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Buy-to-let tax changes: The investor’s guide to changes happening in April 2017

More than two years ago, the Government announced a series of changes to the buy-to-let industry in the hopes to reduce the sector’s attractivity to investors and tackle the housing crisis all in one. Whilst some of these announced changes have already been implemented to their fullest, others are just about to be phased in. The announced changes are: – 3% stamp duty tax hikes (came into effect in April 2016) – Reform to 10% wear and tear allowance (landlords have to give proof of any repairs to receive reductions) – Cut to mortgage tax relief (from 45% down to 20%, phased in over the next three years) On Saturday, April 1st, the phasing in of…
April 4, 2017
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Property industry calls for Govt backing for Crossrail 2 to help boost new home building

Crossrail 2, the proposed rail route linking south west and north East London from Surrey to Hertfordshire, will help boost the housing crisis in and around London, according to home building industry leaders. The major infrastructure project will help deliver 200,000 new homes by increasing connectivity for underdeveloped areas, particularly in London, and transform transport capacity, according to more than 60 professionals in the property and home building industry. In a letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond they are urging the British Government to give the project its bull backing and say they are ready to seize the opportunity to use the development potential. The 66 signatories include Taylor Wimpey, British Land, Melanie…
April 3, 2017
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How has Stamp Duty impacted on the investment market?

New research conducted by My Home Move indicates that the number of properties being purchased by investors has risen sharply since the introduction of the additional 3% stamp duty in April last year. Figures back to 2014 show that the investment market has halved in volume since 1st April 2016. This indicates that landlords and additional home buyers have been reluctant to pay the additional charge. Controversial Doug Crawford, CEO of My Home Move, said: ‘Even though a year has passed, the introduction of the Stamp Duty levy still remains controversial. On the face of it, the changes to Stamp Duty were presented by the Government as a tax that would affect greedy landlords-those who were…
April 3, 2017
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New data shows mortgage accessibility in the UK is at three year high

Mortgage accessibility in the UK has reached a three year high with first time buyer and home owners remortgaging markets having the best prospects for growth in the rest of 2017. The latest figures from the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA) shows that a record 30% of mortgage brokers had no problem sourcing a mortgage for any client type in the preceding six months. Meanwhile, rate of brokers unable to source a mortgage for first time buyers almost halved to 16% with the positive outlook coming despite the introduction of the Mortgage Market Review (MMR) in April 2014 which introduced stricter criteria for borrowers. The number of brokers with no problem sourcing a mortgage for any…
March 30, 2017
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First time buyers in London see prices rise on average by 67% since 2012

House prices for first time buyers in London have increased by an average of 67% with some parts of the capital seeing even higher increases, according to new research. The steepest rise has been in the borough of Waltham Forest where prices for those getting on the housing ladder have increased by 93% from an average of £212,629 in 2012 to £409,491 in 2017, the data from Lloyds Bank shows. The boroughs recording the next biggest gains are Newham, up 92% to £359,212 and Greenwich up 91% to £382,945 but all of these borough, which are next to each other, had average prices well below the London average five years ago. Westminster has seen the smallest…
March 30, 2017
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Article 50: ‘Biggest risk for investors is playing it too safe’

With prime minister Theresa May triggering Article 50 today, formally beginning the UK’s departure from the European Union, investors may be feeling a sense of anxiety. But playing it too safe could be the biggest risk for such investors, according to one fund manager. Stephen Jones, chief investment officer of Kames Capital, who oversees a range of fixed income, property, equity and multi-asset funds, said investors risk missing out on attractive investment opportunities by overweighting cash in their portfolios. “The biggest risk right now is that investors over-worry about disruptive events of financial crises that are unlikely to happen and play it too safe in their asset allocation,” he said. “Cash is a wasting asset against…
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