The SDLT and planning changes announced in the Autumn Statement will provide a fillip to the supply side of the housing market, which is welcome.
But Rob Flint, PRS blogger and solicitor at Winckworth Sherwood LLP, argues that the investment in the North of England will have a much greater impact on the housing market in the long run.
The Chancellor announced the creation of a ‘sovereign wealth fund’ for the North’s shale gas, the Trans-Pennine Express and High Speed 3, together with a quarter of a billion pounds for the new Sir Henry Royce Institute for advanced science to be based in Manchester with branches in Leeds, Liverpool and Sheffield.
Rob Flint said:
“The real story here is not the SDLT changes, but the investment in the Northern Powerhouse. The biggest problem is not a shortage of housing per se, but a shortage of housing where people want to live, where there are jobs, schools and things to do.”
“The best cure for the problems in the housing market is to rebalance the economy in favour of the regions, and the best way the government can help is by investing in infrastructure and devolving power away from London.”
“Manchester in particular is now the place to be for young renters with an eye on buying their first house.”