Philip Hammond

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    Why did Hammond continue his attack on landlords, wonders lettings industry

    Read how several senior members of the lettings industry have spoken out following the 2018 budget to wonder why Hammond hates landlords.

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    Hope for a housing-focused budget evaporate as Hammond so far swerves ‘broken’ market

    Philip Hammond’s pre-Budget briefings have so far been largely bereft of the housing sector policies that many had expected. Only one has been revealed so far. The Chancellor says local authorities will be given powers to compulsorily purchase smaller plots from big developers who sit on them, and hand them to smaller house builders. Hammond has chosen to keep many headline-grabbing policies under wraps until his main speech in the past, but the stark lack of any major housing market policies is surprising. The government has spent much of this year promising to fix the UK’s ‘broken’ housing market including regulating the industry harder and balancing the rental market more in renters’ and first time buyers’ favour. Philip Hammond Ideas discussed in recent weeks as potential Philip Hammond voter winners include offering landlords capital gains tax-free sales if they sell their buy to let properties to a sitting tenant, and backing for Lord Bird’s Creditworthiness Assessment Bill, plus further funding and support for first time buyers. Other ideas include tax incentives for landlords who offer longer-term tenancies, a delay to – or scrapping of – the Section 24 tax relief reductions facing landlords, and an easing of stamp duty for…

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    Philip! Charge Stamp Duty by £100k bands, pleads leading industry CEO

    Leading property industry boss David Westgate from Andrews believes charging Stamp Duty in £100k bands will revivie sluggish market in many parts of the UK.

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    Spring Statement: Hammond reveals where taxpayers’ billions are being spent on extra homes

    Philip Hammond updated MPs during his Spring Statement today about the government’s progress towards building more homes in the UK and revealed where and how part of the £44 billion committed to the effort is now being spent. This includes £4.1 billion being distributed to 44 “forward thinking” local authorities via the government’s Housing Infrastructure Fund to help build more homes, and that £220 million is to be spent on supporting small house builders. Also, London is to have £1.67 billion to spend on 27,000 additional affordable homes by 2020/21. First time buyers The Chancellor also said that 60,000 first time buyers had been helped on to the property ladder so far by his Stamp Duty changes in last year’s Autumn Budget, which abolished the duty for homes bought by first timers under £300,000. Philip Hammond also referred to the work of Oliver Letwin MP, who is leading a government investigation into why it takes so long for homes to be built. House building delays In a letter deposited in the Commons Library, he reveals that his initial investigations blames the ‘build out’ stage rather than land banking, which many affordable homes campaigners believe is the real culprit. Instead, Letwin…

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    Theresa May chairs first meeting of new housing taskforce, but was Dominic Raab there?

    Meeting of ministerial minds urged by PM to "think creatively" about how to build more homes, but where was her Minister for Housing?

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    Stamp Duty cut: first-time buyers rejoice, but experts warn of price rises

    If Chancellor Philip Hammond thought his Stamp Duty cut for first time buyers announced during yesterday’s Budget would get a unanimous thumbs up, then things definitely aren’t going to plan. Firstly Robert Cote, Chairman of the Office for Budget responsibility, revealed that his organisation thought the tax cut would push up prices by 0.3% and that “the main financial gainers will actually be people who already own properties, rather than first time buyers themselves”. Treasury Chief Secretary has subsequently dismissed the OBR’s prediction and just a “minor increase”. But Mark Hayward, Chief Executive of the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) (pictured, left) also sounded a note of caution saying that although overall it was a positive move, it would increase house prices by pushing up demand for first time buyer properties. “We have seen this in areas where Help to Buy is offered, as it attracts a great deal of interest from first time buyers,” he said. Sarah Beeny, TV presenter and founder of online agent Tepilo (pictured, right), also weighed in, saying she thought the measures would not make a huge difference to the market. “Cutting stamp duty for first time buyers is unlikely to do much –…

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    £12 billion extra for housing revealed during Conservative Conference

    Details of Theresa May’s announcements during her conference speech yesterday about how she will fix the nation’s ‘broken’ housing market have been revealed including measures worth an extra £2 billion. The extra cash will be spent on building additional council homes for rent, which comes on top of the extra £10 billion announced on Monday to fund an expansion of the Help to Buy scheme. The budget for affordable homes is to be increased by £2 billion to £9.1 billion and will see an extra 25,000 homes to rent created that are “affordable for local people”. Theresa said she was “getting government back into the business of building houses” and that she wanted to create “a new generation of council houses to help fix our broken housing market”. “Whether you’re trying to buy your own home, renting privately and looking for more security, or have been waiting for years on a council list, help is on the way,” she said. The £2 billion will also be used to change housing policy on affordable homes – subtly but importantly – to include funding for ‘social’ as well as ‘affordable’ council homes to rent. Help to buy The additional spending comes after Chancellor…

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    Spring Budget 2017: stunned industry wonders where the property went

    Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond delivered a Spring Budget 2017 totally devoid of any help for the UK’s struggling housing market. It also failed to lessen or backtrack on recent Stamp Duty hikes for landlords or the lettings fees ban. The only palpable good news for agents includes a mooted extra tax for digital-only businesses to level the playing fields with their high-street competitors – something for agents facing competition from online-only and hybrid ones. Corporation tax Other business benefits within the budget include a reduction of corporation tax from 19% to 17% by 2020 and that businesses with turnovers below the VAT threshold will be given a year’s grace before having to start quarterly digital reporting. Business rates But for the industry’s 20,000 branches, a much-hoped-for reform of the business rates system did not materialise as major hikes loom for many high-street operators. Instead, and in order to see off a potential Tory rebellion, the Chancellor announced a fighting fund of £435m to help soften the blow. This will include a £300m discretionary fund to be shared out by councils to businesses least able to take the rates hit. Hammond also pledged that no business losing its small…

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    Autumn Statement: Building industry response

    The housing industry’s response to the Autumn statement has been mixed – depending on whether your a housebuilder or in lettings, or whether you believe what he says at all! Some like him… “Philip Hammond is something of a political novelty, he is a Chancellor who listens,” says Jeremy Blackburn, RICS Head of Policy as The Chancellor, Philip Hammond finished his Autumn Statement. “Our ‘listening Chancellor’ consulted widely with industry in the build up to today’s statement, as I’m sure he will as Britain moves closer towards Brexit. We haven’t yet seen him pictured in a hard hat, but he clearly understands the housing sector better than his predecessors. “RICS warned Treasury that the UK is facing a critical rental shortfall of 1.8m homes. Our latest figures show that there has been a 15 per cent decline in house sales to first time buyers over recent months. That tells us that for all the rhetoric, David Cameron and George Osborne’s Starter Homes Strategy failed to get off the ground.” We can only hope that Jeremy is right. Other industry comments were varied in their support and/or cynicism. Martin Skinner, CEO Inspired Homes, said: “I am pleased that the Government is recognising the…

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    Autumn Statement: 40,000 new homes promised

    40,000 new homes on their way – that was a good start to The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement. The Government has, again, increased its drive for more affordable housing to help to address what he described as a chronic shortage. The Chancellor echoed the pledge by Theresa May, the Prime Minister, to ensure the economy “works for everyone.” Philip Hammond said that the Government had made great efforts but now must go even further, announcing a further £1.4bn funding injection to help thousands more families to buy a home. The Government says that 40,000 new homes will be built as a result of the funding injection, which, with the Help to Buy Equity Loan Scheme and the Help to Buy ISA, will be used to help first-time buyers, sharing owners who wish to move on. He said that they will abandon the rigid framework set by the current Affordable Homes Programme, with the £4.3bn of current and £1.4bn of additional funding allocated “flexibly” between existing shared ownership and affordable rent schemes. Previous plans indicated that 88pc of funds would be used to build at least 135,000 homes for shared ownership, which are targeted at families with incomes of £80,000 or less,…

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