Chancellor Philip Hammond has delivered the UK’s first official autumn budget and we’ve been taking a look at what was announced and what it could mean for you.
Here’s a rundown of the top 5 things we think you need to know…
1. No stamp duty for first time buyers
The headline news from 2017’s autumn budget is that if you’re a first time buyer you’ll no longer have to pay stamp-duty, as long as the house you’re buying is less than £300,000.
If you’re buying a house up to £500,000, no stamp duty will be added on the first £300,000.
Before this measure came in, the average first-time buyer in the UK was paying about £1,660 in stamp duty, on a property costing £211,980.1
This comes in with immediate effect in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, so if you’re looking for your first house now or in the New Year, this should help give a little relief during the expensive house buying process.
2. More affordable new homes to be built
In a move to help address the current challenges within the UK property market, the Chancellor has pledged that more investment will be given for building 300,000 more affordable new homes per year on average by the mid-2020s.
It’s thought that at the minute the UK needs tens of thousands more homes than are currently being built to keep up with demand.2
3. Changes to taxes for diesel cars
Taxes on diesel cars will rise from April next year and company car drivers will have to pay more to drive a diesel.
It’s thought almost 3 million drivers will be affected by these tax increases.3
This comes after plans for new parking charges and tolls to drive in some towns/cities for diesel drivers were announced by the government earlier this year.
The tax rise won’t affect any newer diesels that have been introduced to meet latest standards.
4. Living wage and personal allowance changes
Living wage is based on what’s needed to cover the basic costs of living.
The good news is, if you’re over 25 and currently earn the living wage, the rate is going up from £7.50 to £7.83 per hour in April next year.
If you work full-time, this could mean an extra £600 a year.4
There’s also some changes to the personal allowance, which is the amount you can earn before you start paying income tax, as this will rise from £11,500 to £11,850 from April 2018.
5. We’re preparing for Brexit
The government has budgeted for putting £3bn aside over the next two years in preparation for us leaving the European Union (EU).
The UK triggered the two year process to leave the EU on 29th March 2017 and with negotiations still underway and at a critical phase, it’s thought this is a contingency step, to help us make the transition as smooth as possible.
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1 Statistic taken from BBC article – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42071148