3 Sep

Government policies 'should help first-time buyers'

Government policies 'should help first-time buyers'

First-time buyers should be the main beneficiaries of the government's new housing policies announced yesterday, industry stakeholders have said.

As well as chancellor Alistair Darling's announcement on stamp duty, the government revealed it would provide help in the form of interest-free loans for up to 30 per cent of the cost of new homes for first-time buyers.

Commenting on this, the director general of the Council of Mortgage Lenders Michael Coogan said: "The new shared equity product to help first-time buyers will be useful for a particular tranche of would-be home-owners who genuinely wish to enter the market now."

He also said the stamp duty move would help some, although it still left half of transactions attracting the tax.

Giving his reaction to the measures, the chief executive of the National Association of Estate Agents Peter Bolton King said it was "encouraging" that the government has seen that it is a multiple number of issues that need to be addressed to boost the market.

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