David Bexon, Managing Director of SmartNewHomes.com, comments on Halifax’s new First-Time Buyer Affordability Review:
“While it is welcome news that there has been an increase in the number of local authorities across the UK where property is more affordable for first time buyers it still leaves 86% of LAs unaffordable.
“For those FTBs lucky enough to have the almost universally required 25% deposit they may be able to secure a reasonable mortgage rate, however, the majority of lenders are still penalising those at the bottom of the ladder by refusing to offer competitive rates and increase lending. Part of the deal of the Government bail out was to see those banks benefiting from the £50 billion to return to 2007 lending levels, but this has yet to happen.
“It has been left to the UK’s housebuilders to offer the best opportunities to help homebuyers to get moving with thousands of deals available to help make home buying more affordable and accessible.
“The availability of affordable shared ownership schemes will be the only route for FTBs in those unaffordable regions, providing a low-risk route onto the property ladder while allowing buyers to gradually increase their share in the home over time. ‘Staircasing’ in this way will be the only option in the current climate as buyers can track their own affordability as well as market conditions, and avoid overstretching themselves.”
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Date Published: 30 December 2008