A review of the mortgage market and right to buy policy has been promised by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
The PM made the announcement in Blackpool on Thursday, June 9, saying the changes were to help more people on to the property ladder.
Under the proposals, which will be reported back this autumn, there will be better access to low deposit home loans, including to those on Universal Credit or other state benefits.
Targeted specifically at young people and first time buyers, this will include low deposit finance such as 95% mortgages.
According to government figures more than 50% of today’s renters could afford the monthly cost of a mortgage but various constraints mean only 6% could immediately access a typical first time buyer mortgage.
Mr Johnson also said existing leaseholders would be able to buy their freeholds at a large discount and Right To Buy would be extended to housing association tenants. He promised one home built for every one which is bought.
However, critics and industry groups have said housing associations will not have the resources to replace sold homes and it is unlikely any homes sold under the scheme will be replaced.
The average house in the UK now costs £367,000 and prices have risen by 10.5% in the past 12 months and 74% in the last 10 years according to the May Halifax House Price Index. This is faster than wages have risen, making it difficult for first time buyers especially, to get on the housing ladder.
Sheldon Bosley Knight’s head of residential sales, James Morton said: “This announcement sounds great and we would welcome anything that can be done to help those who want to buy a property.
“However as with all these proposals, the devil is in the detail and we need to see that especially for the review of the mortgage market.
“As responsible agents we want to make sure people can afford the homes they want to buy. What we don’t want to see is for anyone to get into difficulties with debt as a result of this scheme.
“For many who want to get a foot on the housing ladder but are on low incomes, it may still be unaffordable even with a scheme such as this as house prices are rising faster than wages. Add to that the cost of living crisis and people may decide to focus on heating and eating rather than trying to buy a house.”