Docklands News

Mortgage holiday could leave homeowners out of pocket

Taking an extended mortgage holiday could leave homeowners £4,000 out of pocket - equivalent to an extra £47 on their monthly bills. There are growing concerns that homeowners who take advantage of the scheme during the crisis could be facing further costs later on. Government rules mean that borrowers can ask to take a break from their mortgage payments for up to six months if they have been financially affected by the coronavirus. Analysis by Private Finance found that the cost of doing so could quickly mount as interest continued to accrue during any mortgage holiday. A homeowner with a £200,000 mortgage and 20 years remaining on their term would pay an additional £3,935 in interest over the span of the mortgage if they took a six-month payment break, based on a typical standard variable rate of 4.5%. This is the equivalent to adding £47 a month to mortgage repayments once the payment holiday is over.

The Daily Telegraph (12/-6/2020)

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Thousands of new London homes rushed through planning

More than 22,000 new homes in the capital have been given the green light this year, despite the unprecedented disruption to the property market caused by the coronavirus lockdown. Even in April and May, the most restricted period of the year, 4,618 homes received planning permission. Among a flurry of projects still up for evaluation is a scheme from London Square Partners and One Housing to redevelop Lea Bridge station and create 300 new homes. Meanwhile, those seeking to acquire an East End home a little sooner can look at Oxbow, a 132-home development within walking distance of Canary Wharf within the Aberfeldy regeneration zone in Poplar. Studios, one- and two-bed apartments at the site’s two buildings went on sale this week, starting from £351,000.

Evening Standard (10/06/2020)

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UK house prices fall for third month in a row

The average house price fell for the third month in a row in May. Across the UK, a 0.2% month-on-month decline in property values in May took the average house price to £237,808, Halifax said. It followed monthly falls of 0.6% in April and 0.3% in March. Russell Galley, managing director at Halifax, said: “It should still be noted that with a limited number of transactions available, calculating average house prices remains challenging and increased volatility is to be expected.” However, the lender said the relaxation of lockdown measures in England in mid-May had led to an uptick in interest from buyers. “Looking ahead, we expect market activity to increase progressively as restrictions are eased further across the whole of the UK and we continue to have confidence in the underlying health of the housing market over the long term”, Mr Galley added.

Financial Times (05/06/2020)   The Guardian (05/06/2020)   City AM (05/06/2020)    Evening Standard (05/06/2020)

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Action urged on mortgage help loophole

Banks have been accused of moving the goalposts after it emerged that they could reject applications from homeowners who asked for help during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Financial Conduct Authority has said banks cannot leave a black mark on the credit file of customers who have faced financial difficulty during the crisis. However, the rules allow mortgage lenders to examine bank statements to see if a payment break was taken, and may use the information to decide on future applications. Shadow chancellor Anneliese Dodds has called for urgent action to ensure homeowners are not disadvantaged.

The Daily Telegraph (05/06/2020)   

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Help to build needed to boost homes supply

A report has called for £3bn of taxpayer funds to be allocated to developers through a ‘help to build’ scheme to prevent a collapse in the supply of new homes. Housebuilders should be handed grants of up to £25,000 for every new home to protect the industry amid a coronavirus collapse in demand, the Centre for Policy Studies think tank said. It comes amid evidence that families are shunning the property market because of fears about losing their job. Grants should only be issued for properties that have been sold and could go towards buyer discounts or part-exchange schemes, the CPS said, leading to 150,000 homes being built.

The Daily Telegraph (09/06/2020)

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Homes England gives £105m to accelerate Silvertown project

Homes England has agreed funding packages worth £309m to accelerate construction at three major London developments, in Brent Cross, Barking Riverside, and the Docklands. The Silvertown Quays project in east London will use £105m to accelerate the delivery of 3,000 new homes. The £1.2bn project is being delivered by the Silvertown Partnership, a joint venture of US property firm Starwood Capital Group and Lendlease. The development lies on a 62-acre brownfield site in the Royal Docks, Newham, and will also deliver office, retail and leisure space.

Construction News (03/06/2020)

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