The W Note – UK Housing: What, Where and Why?

What – happened in May?

London House Prices Tumbled

It has recently been reported that house prices in London tumbled in March, with the annualised rate of inflation dropping to minus 0.7%, the steepest fall since 2009, according to official Land Registry figures for March. The falls in the capital contrast with continued rises across the rest of the UK, with the overall rate of house price inflation at 4.2%, with the highest rise in Scotland at 6.7%.

Bigger Mortgages for Greener Homes Proposed

Research has found that factoring in the efficiency of a home into lenders’ affordability calculations could allow them to increase loans by £11,500 because buyers’ electricity and gas bills will be lower. That theory will become reality from June, when Welsh help-to-buy loans will take into account the energy rating of new-build homes worth up to £300,000.

Where – are the biggest changes happening in the UK?

During 2017 the largest increase in property value was in Wales and the East Midlands, with property prices increasing by 8%. Property prices in London rose by just 1% and prices in Perth fell by 5.3%. These fluctuating changes vary on location, as areas with previously lower property prices are now becoming more desirable locations for those looking for value for money.

Why – has the government made policy changes to benefit younger generations?

Affordable housing is a constant subject for news and debate. Anxieties in young people are particularly apparent, as many believe that they will never be able to afford a home. Only 38% of 25 to 34 year olds are homeowners, down from 57% 10 years ago. The recent cuts in stamp duty will hopefully encourage more young people to buy, due to the savings they can make. Mortgage rates are more attainable for first time buyers, with new developments across the UK being built to target young buyers’ needs in a property. The focus in encouraging and enabling first time buyers is key aim of housing policy, as young buyers are more likely to contribute to the economy on a higher level than any other group. These young people will move and redevelop property several times during their lifetime, fuelling the economy.