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Third of first-time buyers confused about stamp duty changes

Written by: Antonia Di Lorenzo
Almost a third of first-time buyers are confused about the recent changes to stamp duty, data has revealed.

A fifth of first-time buyers have not changed their minds on the price of the house they want to buy, as they do not know the impact of new stamp duty rules, according to research by L&C Mortgages.

Almost 13% of first-time buyers wrongly think they could save more than £5,000 buying their first home without having to pay stamp duty.

On top of this, almost two in five said that they did not know how much they would save if they bought their first home now.

The majority of English first-time buyers believe that recent stamp duty cuts by the government did not go far enough, with six in 10 believing that stamp duty should be abolished for all first-time buyers.

Almost two in five think the value of the properties excluded from stamp duty should rise in line with house prices, highlighting further the belief that the current measures don’t go far enough, and will need to be kept under close review.

David Hollingworth, from L&C, said more needs to be done in order to ensure first-time buyers know what is available to them.

He said: “The stamp duty relief is welcomed by many who are looking to buy their first home, but the new rules could be considered complicated to someone who hasn’t been through the process of purchasing property before.

“In fact, the lack of understanding uncovered through our research could mean that some first-time buyers think that owning their own home is one step further away than it actually is – when in reality, a saving of up to £5,000 could be the difference in getting the required deposit together, or dropping to a lower LTV bracket.

“The number of first-time buyers who believe that the tax should be abolished for all those buying their first home, speaks of the need for clarity.

“Of course, abolishing stamp duty for all would mean financial savings for many, but it also highlights the desire for a more simple and transparent system. Going through the steps to buy your first home can feel like a daunting and complicated undertaking – so it’s really important you seek expert advice in order to make sure you’re getting the best deal, and that you’re aware of all your options.”

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