Amid quite a gloomy statement, the property industry was one of only a few sectors to be thrown a bone. That said, loud calls for a reduction in the 3% SDLT surcharge on buying a second property were ignored; Hammond instead opted for a ban on letting agent’s fees and a cash injection to build 40,000 new homes.
The extra funding for affordable homes will be welcomed, especially by small housebuilders, but can do little to assuage concerns of the construction industry as they battle through an erratic planning system, recruitment difficulties and cautious lenders. The Chancellor did make a small noise about a relaxation of the funding rules but failed to make any more than passing comment.
A White Paper has been promised and we can only hope that the cautious housing budget grows into something a bit more robust.
The UK Government has announced billions of pounds of new funding to boost the building of new homes and will encourage a wider spread of home types to buy and rent.