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Budget 2020: Housing market roundup

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A fund to remove dangerous cladding from high-rise buildings and a 2% Stamp Duty surcharge for non-UK nationals were just two of the nine housing measures announced today
Budget 2020: Housing market roundup

New Chancellor Rishi Sunak MP delivered his Budget to the House of Commons today, announcing a huge number of spending commitments.

Here’s what he announced for the housing market:

1. A 2% non-UK resident Stamp Duty Land Tax surcharge from 1 April 2021, that will be used to help fund policies to reduce rough sleeping in England.

2. £643 million investment into accommodation and support services to help rough sleepers off the streets – funded by the Stamp Duty measure above.

3. An additional £9.5 billion for the Affordable Homes Programme. In total, the programme will allocate £12.2 billion of grant funding from 2021-22 to build affordable homes across England.

4. Following the Grenfell tragedy, the Government has confirmed an additional £1 billion for a Building Safety Fund, to remove unsafe cladding from residential buildings above 18 meters.

5. Allocations from the Housing Infrastructure Fund totalling £1.1 billion for nine different areas, including Manchester, South Sunderland and South Lancaster. These successful bids will unlock up to 69,620 homes and will help to stimulate housing and infrastructure growth across the country.

6. Additional housing investments in York Central, Harlow and North Warwickshire totalling £328 million.

7. £400 million for Mayoral Combined Authorities and local areas to establish housing on brownfield land across the country.

8. Plans for a Future Homes Standard to improve the standards of newly built homes to reduce emissions from homes and to help keep household energy costs low.

9. A new long-term Single Housing Infrastructure Fund to unlock new homes in areas of high demand across the country by funding the provision of strategic infrastructure and assembling land for development.

More needs to be done

The housing market reacted with disappointment to the announcements.

Nick Leeming, chairman of Jackson-Stops, said: “It is disappointing that the Government has failed to provide the housing market with a long anticipated reform to stamp duty for UK residents. This is aggravated by the overseas buyer tax, which could now see foreign purchasers pay up to 17% in stamp duty from 2021.

“Reducing the burden of stamp duty across the board would have provided the market with further momentum following the Boris bounce. Despite this, the higher end of the market may now see movement as foreign buyers look to secure deals ahead of this deadline.”

Founder and CEO of Stone Real Estate, Michael Stone, added: “Yet another chancellor with claims to get Britain building but building on brownfield alone will do little to solve the housing crisis.

“Brownfield land accounts for just 0.5% of the landmass in England and whilst we heard him wax lyrical about his good friend the Housing Secretary announcing a planning shake-up tomorrow, we have heard this a few times before.”

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