Welcome to this edition of the Town & Country New Build Newsletter. This monthly update will have some highlights of the latest products available, details of current schemes, as well as the latest industry news.
First-time buyer mortgage figures have hit their highest level in a decade, according to data by Yorkshire Building Society. The building society collected its data until October 2018, with November and December projected within the analysis.
The firm estimates that 367,038 first-time buyers secured mortgages in 2018. This figure is a drastic increase from the financial crisis in 2008 where just 192,300 first-time buyers were able to purchase their first property.
First-time buyers in 2018 have also seen an increase since before the financial crisis in 2007 when according to Halifax, 359,900 first-time buyers purchased their first homes.
The data also revealed that in most regions in the UK, first-time buyer numbers have risen progressively over the last 10 years, despite property prices growing faster than wages. First-time buyers now represent 50% of all homes bought with a mortgage.
Barclays has added eight new partner house-builders to its Green Home Mortgage.
The Green Home Mortgage rewards homebuyers who purchase an A or B EPC Energy Efficiency Rated new build home with lower interest rates on their mortgage.
New partners include Bellway, Bloor Homes, Bovis Homes, Fairview, Kier Living, Linden Homes, Persimmon Homes and Taylor Wimpey.
Added to the initial five partners – Barratt Homes, Berkeley Group, Countryside Properties, Crest Nicholson and Redrow – the house-builders between them build almost half of all new properties in the UK.
The number of new build homes starts in England was up 12 per cent in the quarter ending September 2018, compared to both the previous three months and the same quarter last year, according to the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government.
The statistics show that an estimated 44,740 dwellings started to undergo construction in the quarter to September 2018. New Build completions were estimated at 41,270 – the same as the previous quarter and 3% higher than the year before.
Annual new build dwelling starts totalled 166,400 in the year to September 2018, an increase in 1% on the previous year and completions totalled 163,420 which is an increase of 6% compared with last year.
UK builders registered the highest level of new homes since 2007, according to the industry body the National House Building Council. 43,500 new homes were registered in the three months to the end of September.
The amount of new homes registered in the third quarter of 2018 were 15% higher than the same period last year. In the private sector 33,520 new homes were registered, up 16% year on-year and 10,058 were registered in the affordable sector, an increase of 12%.
In the 2018 Autumn budget, the government announced that a new Help to Buy equity loan scheme will be launched for first-time buyers in April 2021, replacing the current scheme that ends in March.
The scheme will run for two years until March 2023 and prices will be capped at 1.5 times the current forecast average first-time buyer price in each region.
The government also extended stamp duty relief to first-time buyers purchasing shared ownership homes priced up to £500,000 – backdated to include those who have bought since 22 November 2017.