PROPTECH-X ‘Proptech & Property News’: HousingHand comments on Spring Budget | Finch becomes NHQB accredited supplier

Andrew Stanton’s daily proptech & property news in association with Estate Agent Networking

“Spring Budget Ignores Private Rented Sector”

PRESS RELEASE: While the Spring Budget quite pointedly ignored landlords and, indeed, the private rented sector as a whole, there were a few hidden bonuses tucked away in it for tenants, according to UK rental guarantor service Housing Hand.

Graham Hayward, Chief Operating Officer, Housing Hand: “The extended energy price guarantee should keep costs under a modicum of control, meaning that some tenants will be in a better financial position that they would otherwise have been. When the new support with childcare costs kicks in next year, that will make a major difference to many tenants, potentially saving them thousands of pounds per year.”

Higher earning tenants may also benefit from getting better savings thanks to the pension incentives announced in the Spring Budget, though tax band changes could mean exposure to higher bands.

For landlords and those providing purpose-built student accommodation and Build to Rent homes, however, the Budget was distinctly lacking. Neither stamp duty cuts nor the reinstatement of tax relief on mortgage interest payments made it into the Chancellor’s plans. The only real impact that some might feel is the increase in Corporation Tax from 19% to 25% where profits exceed £250,000.

James Maguire, Head of Sales and Business Development, Housing Hand: “The Spring Budget didn’t contain much of interest to landlords, but it wasn’t so much a missed opportunity as a pause until the Renters’ Reform Bill comes into force, which the Government has committed to doing by the time the current session of Parliament ends in May. That’s when we expect to see real operational changes impacting the private rented sector. If passed without amendment, it will make it illegal to discriminate against benefit claimants by refusing to rent homes to them and protect tenants from ‘no fault’ evictions by abolishing section 21 notices.”

The private rental sector has grown rapidly over the past couple of decades. Back in 1997, 55% of adults aged 25-34 in the UK were homeowners. Just 20 years later, that figure had plummeted to 35%, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, with middle-income young adults experiencing the largest falls in home ownership.

Graham Hayward, Chief Operating Officer, Housing Hand: “As the private rented sector continues to grow, it becomes more important to control and regulate it as we move forward. We’re already seeing a lack of supply, resulting from policy decisions over the past few years, pushing rental prices up for both students and working professionals in key urban areas. It’s essential that Government addresses this swiftly and comprehensively if we are to have a well-functioning rental sector. In the meantime, Housing Hand will continue to build our guarantee services, to ensure as many people as possible can get the property they want/need.”

Finch digital forms and contracts become a New Homes Quality Board accredited supplier

Finch are delighted to be the latest supplier accredited by the New Homes Quality Board for their services in providing digital forms & contracts to home builders and their agents.

Created following an all-party parliamentary group which outlined concerns with the new build industry, the NHQB established a New Homes Ombudsman Service and industry code of practice called the New Homes Quality Code (NHQC). The framework, which is endorsed by the government – oversees reforms in two areas: the quality of new homes, and the customer service provided by developers.

The Finch new homes reservation form provides clear, concise, and timely information to buyers so that they may properly understand the reservation agreement, and understand what to do or who to speak to if they have any questions. Finch can therefore help developers and agents align to NHQC principles, particularly those of customer service, and transparency.

Alexander Ali, chief executive officer at Finch, said: “We’re delighted to be supporting the aims of the New Homes Quality Board by providing software driven digital forms rather than paper templates for the communication touchpoints in the buying journey. Buyers who use Finch for their reservations get a great customer experience and builders can secure sales even when their offices are closed, from anywhere in the world. It’s a win-win.”

Leon Livermore, chief executive officer at the NHQB, said: “We’re thrilled to announce Finch are now one of our Accredited Suppliers. Not only will Finch be able to boost developer’s customer service and transparency, which are two key aims of our Code, but we also trust they share the same mission as us in increasing the quality of the housebuilding sector for all.”

Proptech and Property News in association with Estate Agent Networking.

Andrew Stanton is the founder and CEO of Proptech-PR, a consultancy for Founders of Proptechs looking to grow and exit, using his influence from decades of industry experience. Separately he is a consultant to some of the biggest names in global real estate, advising on sales and acquisitions, market positioning, and operations. He is also the founder and editor of Proptech-X Proptech & Property News, where his insights, connections and detailed analysis and commentary on proptech and real estate are second to none.

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