As we head towards the anniversary of the first lockdown it’s hard to escape the ongoing social and economic impact of Covid-19. From a commercial perspective you only have to step outside to see real life examples. The empty, non-viable retail units now lining our high streets are a case in point.
From 1st April, the existing Help to Buy Equity Loan Scheme (2013-2021) will be replaced with the new Help to Buy Equity Loan Scheme (2021-2023) and will only be available to first-time buyers purchasing a new build property. Also on that date, regional property price caps will be introduced, with each area of the country having a maximum property value that will be eligible for the scheme.
Despite on-going uncertainty as we continue to navigate the challenges of the pandemic, brokers remain optimistic when looking at the year ahead. Over two thirds (67%) of commercial brokers said they were confident about the UK lending environment this year, whilst 60% state they felt confident about the growth of their business.
With New Year resolutions made, many in the UK will be looking ahead having firmly shut the door on 2020. Despite a particularly difficult year generally, and with our current lockdown status in force; on a social and an economic level, those serving the mortgage industry can still look to the future with optimism.
Extending the stamp duty holiday could be fiscally positive for the UK treasury, according to research commissioned by Kensington Mortgages. Retaining the threshold for paying Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) at its current level of £500,000 would provide new tax revenues – generated by higher transaction volumes, increased property prices, household consumption, and housing market activity – ranging between £2.3 and £4.1 billion. According to analysis by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), in the upper bound estimate this would lead to a fiscal surplus of £139 million.
The bridging market remains strong, despite the clear challenges presented by 2020. Savvy investors – and their brokers – should be confident about the outlook as we head towards the New Year. We saw an understandable drop off in activity in Q2, but as the property market has rebounded, so too has bridging.
Have you attended a webinar this year? Studies show that you probably have and that higher attendance rates will likely extend beyond this year. A webinar is a web-based seminar or lecture on a particular topic, often hosted live and with the ability for attendees to ask questions at the end. So why should brokers be hopping on the webinar train?
Jon Cooper, head of mortgage distribution at Aldermore, discusses our recent 90% LTV trial and how we plan to re-enter this important sector.
Imagine you’re approached by a young couple in their late twenties who’re looking for a mortgage so they can start their journey together, settle down and raise a family. They’ve been saving for years to get a large enough deposit together, they’ve seen the home of their dreams and they think they’ve found the right lender…only to be turned down because they missed a credit card payment or mobile phone bill so long ago that they’d almost forgotten about it.
With COVID-19 restrictions continuing to be part of everyday life, thousands of employees have remained working from home. During the first lockdown back in March many of us were operating from a corner of the living room, the kitchen table or the spare bedroom but as restrictions have continued, home working has become increasingly sophisticated. With more people looking to create a dedicated workspace at home, building a ‘summer house’ separate from the main residence is becoming a popular option. So what opportunities does this create for mortgage intermediaries?