Almost half of FTBs delay plans by nearly a year due to Covid

Almost half of FTBs delay plans by nearly a year due to Covid
Credit: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

The pandemic has caused nearly half of first-time buyers to delay their plans, according to Aldermore.

An August survey of more than 1,000 prospective first-time buyers by the bank found 46 per cent had delayed their plans due to the coronavirus, by an average of 11 months.

Additionally, one in six (17 per cent) experienced a property sale falling through due to the pandemic, and one in five (20 per cent) said they pulled out of buying due to lockdown.

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Half (49 per cent) of first-time buyers also said they were concerned about their financial security because of the pandemic.

Although some first-time buyers have delayed their plans, the survey by Aldermore found that for a quarter (24 per cent) of first-time buyers, the upcoming stamp duty holiday had brought them forward.

Indeed, a fifth (21 per cent) said they would borrow money from friends and family to buy ahead of the deadline.

Residential property buyers can save up to £15,000 on stamp duty until March as a result of the increased tax threshold from £125,000 to £500,000.

From April 1, first-time buyers will pay 5 per cent stamp duty land tax on the portion from £300,001 to £500,000 where the purchase price is no more than £500,000, as before the stamp duty holiday.

Jon Cooper, head of mortgage distribution at Aldermore, said: “Stamp duty relief [...] appears to have received a positive response from first time buyers, with many seeing it as a welcome boost.

“The initial costs of getting on the ladder can be a real barrier to many, so anything that helps reduce that entry fee for some is welcome for the housing market.”

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