First time buyers aren’t fully benefiting from recent stamp duty changes because of stringent mortgage approvals processes, according to mortgage advisor Brian Reid.

His analysis comes in response to today’s Halifax House Price Index data, which shows a decline in house price growth.

Brian, who is the director of Year End Consultancy Service, said: “Today’s data from the Halifax shows a slowdown in house price growth in London and the South East.

“Despite the recent changes to stamp duty rules for first time buyers, and historically low interest rates, which are both positives for first time buyers, obtaining a mortgage is as difficult as ever.”

Brian points to the requirements from lenders as the reason why it is so hard to get a mortgage. "It is not the lenders fault as they are required to make sure that the borrower is able to afford the monthly mortgage repayments, and this is a requirement from central government," he said.

He added: “There are still three big barriers that first time buyers have to overcome. The first is raising a large enough deposit, particularly in London and the south east. The second is having an income large enough to comfortably meet the monthly mortgage repayments. The third is proving that they are a safe bet to lend to when they have had limited previous exposure to borrowing.”

Brian also credits the slowdown in part to Brexit uncertainty, which is causing investors to be cautious.
Although challenges still exist, Brian believes that recent government actions do represent a step in the right direction.

He said: “Access to Help to Buy ISAs for example, which help first time buyers to save a deposit of up to £4,000 annually with the government adding 25% on top, have improved the situation for those trying to get onto the ladder.”


For more information contact Brian Reid on 07803 937370 or email

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For more information about today’s Halifax House Price Index data you can visit

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