The UK property market conversation has been heating up over the last week, with troubling reports from the FCA regarding Help to Buy claiming that many owners through the scheme are being exposed to negative equity. Comments from Ester McVey before departing her role as housing secretary, that 1 in 20 help to buy loans fallen in arrears. And today, the BBC housing briefing reports an estimated 1.2m deficit in the housing needed in the UK.
The UK quite clearly has some big challenges to address in the housing sector. Especially when it comes to finding a solution to the problems of generation rent.
Speaking with residents who we had recently moved into the new Sutton development The Old Gas work, we asked what are the biggest concerns with your help to buy property?
The slow down in property prices over the last three years, means that current valuations of our property in the area appear to be £45k less than what we bought for – £330k
The help to buy issue, certainly has a number of people concerned about being locked into long term arrangement that doesn’t suit their needs. One owner of a one bed in the complex commented.
“I own a one bed flat in the building. I’m worried that in three years at the end of the 5 year interest free period, I won’t be able or sell at my buy price, or get a remortgage with a more competitive lender. I have a partner with a child on the way, one bedroom is going to start feeling very cramped soon!”
Despite the known problems and eye watering deposits to get on the ladder, almost all areas of the UK have experienced an upsurge in spending behaviour in the first month of this year. Over 100k home sales transactions were recorded last month, 4000 more than in December and over 5000 more than January last year, according to the latest figures from HMRC.
How the government responds to the challenge of the current Help to Buy predicament for existing owners and a potential replacement scheme will be watched closely. The big question after all is how it seeks to help stimulate housing market liquidity for the forgotten generation of home buyers.
Have your say.
What would be your solution to replace the help to buy scheme?
How could the government seek to help existing help to buy owners who find themselves in negative equity?
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