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First-Time Buyer Advice for 2018 in Horsham

In the South East and Horsham, it’s a fantastic time to invest in property with house prices rising 6% in the Horsham District in 2017, ahead of the 5.4% rise nationally, and by 34% in the last five years.

First time buyers looking to climb onto the property ladder in 2018 and stop renting or living with parents have a number of cost-effective incentives with stamp duty changes and Government schemes.

A specific opportunity available locally is our new development of 102 apartments starting from just £170,000, these well-equipped studio, one and two bedroom apartments are located on North Street and just a few minutes’ walk from the town centre and the train station. Read our important advice and considerations to buying your first home:

Basic Moving Checklist:

  • Estimate your budget and costs
  • Work out your likely mortgage requirement (we are partnered with whole of market financial advisors)
  • Apply for a Mortgage In Principle
  • Search for properties to buy, do your research and write a checklist!
  • View properties of interest
  • Make an offer through the estate agents
  • Complete the process with your solicitors (we are partnered with local solicitors who can provide a quote)
    • Conveyancing
    • Surveying
    • Completion
  • Arrange to move in

No stamp duty under £300,000

In November 2017, it was announced that first time buyers will be relieved of stamp duty on all properties bought up to the value of £300,000, and buyers of properties up to £500,000 will only be charged 5% on the difference between these figures.

This tax relief could save an estimated 80% of first time buyers from paying any stamp duty at all, with the average first time buyer saving £1,660 (according to figures published in The Guardian newspaper, read more here). For a first time buyer who’s saving and strictly budgeting for their dream home, it’s a significant release of funds towards a deposit or solicitor’s fees.

Bare this in mind when applying for a mortgage and viewing properties of interest; it may mean you can afford a more expensive – at face value – property than you thought as you do not need to budget for the additional cost of stamp duty.

Government’s Help To Buy Scheme

The Help to Buy Scheme is an excellent way to buy your first home, a home that you may otherwise be unable to afford. The scheme allows you to purchase a property with just a 5% deposit, and a 20% equity loan from the government. You do not pay the equity loan for the first five years and then you can either pay off the loan or start paying interest.

You can also make use of the Government’s Help to Buy ISA. This unique ISA boosts your savings with 25% interest to the total value of £3,000. This can be used for properties under the value of £250,000 and whilst it is a separate scheme to Help to Buy, they can be used in conjunction.

No matter your age, the ISA is open to individual buyers and those purchasing as a couple, who have never owned a property before. It’s particularly useful to those buying in affluent areas, such as Horsham.

Changing interest rates

All buyers, including first time buyers, should always do their research and be aware of interest rates fluctuations in the UK which will affect the base interest rate of mortgages. In 2017 the base rate increased from 0.25% to 0.5%, which is still one of the lowest rates in the last decade. However, any increase will have an impact on your mortgage repayments.

It has been suggested the rate may rise again in the summer of 2018, but this has not been confirmed. If you are on a fixed rate mortgage, this does not affect the cost of your mortgage each month, but it is likely that you will pay more once the fixed rate period is finished.

To get the best deal for your personal circumstances, shop around mortgage offers with leading banks and building societies and check advertised rates when you’re ready to buy. Fixed rate deals provide consistency in your payments and allow you to plan your spending knowing that you’ve set monthly outgoings.

New build developments

New build properties are extremely popular with first time buyers and offer a brand new, fresh property, typically featuring state of the art and modern features. They’re ideal if you don’t want to undertake refurbishments and are confident reserving off-plan. The Government has pledged to build 300,000 new builds in 2018, which opens up the market even further.

Of course, they also represent a straight-forward venture for property investors buying to rent. New builds can be rented right away to start bringing in an income and will have a significant ROI and resale value.

Buy your first home with Brock Taylor

Whether you are looking to buy a brand new home or any other type of property, we’re on hand to provide help and guidance every step of the way.  We also have partnerships with local financial advisers and solicitors who are able to provide free advice and help make the process of buying your first home less daunting.

With longer opening hours than any other independent agent in the area, contact us on 01403 272022, or visit our high street branch at 2-6 East Street, Horsham.

Posted on: 27 March 2018


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