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How can first time buyers get on the property ladder?

View profile for Clare Hallett
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How can first time buyers get on the property ladder?

In this article, Conveyancing Partner Clare Hallett answers some of the most common questions from first-time buyers who are looking to purchase a home.

Who is considered a first-time buyer?

A first-time buyer is legally defined as a person buying a property who has not previously owned a home.

Who is a first-time buyer for stamp duty purposes?

For the purposes of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT), the definition is legally the same.

If you are purchasing a property with someone who has purchased a property in the past, you do not qualify as a first-time buyer and will therefore be ineligible to claim first-time buyer Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) relief.

Do I qualify for stamp duty relief?

First-time buyers qualify for SDLT relief, if:

  • You are a first-time buyer purchasing a home that costs £300,000 or less, then you are exempt from paying SDLT.
  • You are purchasing a home which is priced higher than this threshold, you will only have to pay SDLT on the value above £300,000 if the property is valued under £500,000.
  • The property costs more than £500,000, then you will not be entitled to any relief and will play SDLT a the normal rate.
  • If you are curious as to whether you qulify for first-time buyer SDLT releif, please refer to our first-time buyer definition on page 4.

What is a mortgage?

A mortgage is a loan which is taken out to purchase a property and is to be repaid plus interest. The average team for mortgage repayment is 25 years.

A mortgage requires a deposit - a down payment on the property. For example, if a property costs £150,000 a 10% deposit would be £15,000.

The loan to value (LTV) is the amount you've borrowed as a percentage of the property's price. In the above scenario it would be 90%. The lower your LTV, the lower your interest rate.

How much does a conveyancer cost?

The majority of solicitor charge fees on a sliding scale based on property value. This is often referred to as the basic fee.

The more expensive the property, the higher the fees will be. This is usually down to the amount of risk involved with a higher purchase.

Some solicitors will charge additional fees for various reasons. Some examples of additional fees, as well as examples of potential third party fees, can be found in our dedicated first-time buyers guide. Skip to page 8 of the guide at the bottom of this page to find out more.

A complete guide for first-time buyers

We've taken the time to create a complete guide to buying a home, specifically for first-time buyers.

The guide outlines everything you need to know, from contact to completion!

Take a look for yourself, below...

Need further guidance?

Hopefully, after reading the guide, you feel a bit more familiar with the process of buying a home.

If you're still a bit unsure, don't worry! If you choose to instruct us, our bright team will keep you in the loop from the outset and will stay by your side until completion.

Speak to our team today

If you're ready for advice, or have any questions, please don't hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team.

We offer a free initial chat to all new clients.

You can call us on 01202 499255, or fill in the form at the top of this page to speak to us.