Bonus for shared ownership buyers

First-time buyers who bought a shared ownership property in the last twelve months should check if they are due a refund on any Stamp Duty paid That's because when Chancellor Hammond extended Stamp Duty Relief available to first time buyers of shared ownership property in his Autumn 2018 budget, he also applied the extension retrospectively to any qualifying transactions that took place between 22 November 2017 and 29 October 2018. Since November 2017, relief has been available to first time buyers of shared ownership property who opted for the full…

Can’t afford to get on the property ladder? Shared ownership could be an option

The price of properties, even so-called ‘first-time homes’ are completely out of proportion to the average income. To save for a deposit on your first home is now taking house-hunters (especially first-timers) years longer than before. The ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ is an option if you’re struggling to get the funds together on your own, but if you don’t have the ability to borrow from family members, or are unable to raise the money for that essential deposit on your own, there is another way to get your foot…

Interview with Laura Gill of our Residential department

Interview with Laura Gill of our Residential Property department Q: How long have you worked at Bowling & Co? A: I joined the firm approximately 18 months ago and work in the Residential team.  Q: What is the typical time frame for a property transaction to take, from start to finish? A: That's a tough question! It really depends on the type of property transaction. The average would be, say 6 to 8 weeks for a freehold property and around 8 to 12 weeks for a leasehold property. However, those average timescales…

Landlords must check they hit the spot with deposits

Claims for incorrectly handled property rental deposits are soaring and landlords should be alert to the danger and ensure they or their agents are complying with the legal requirements, if they want to avoid high penalties. According to figures from insurers, the number of claims relating to deposits peaked at 25% of all professional indemnity claims made by estate and letting agents in the first quarter of this year, up from just 3% last year 1.  The claims most often relate to a landlord lodging a deposit late or failing…

Bump in the night for Airbnb landlords

Rule changes on short term lets could see part-time landlords hit by a new tax bill from next year if they let out their whole property. Homeowners can earn up to £7,500 per year tax free by renting a room to a lodger, but the rise of the sharing economy and sites like Airbnb has seen many hobby landlords come into the market and use the tax break to offset income when they let the whole of their home out for short stays. Whether it’s property owners in SW London…

Buying a house for holiday letting

If you've got the money to buy a holiday home, why have it sitting empty for much of the year? Unless you're going to be popping down to your holiday home every weekend, you could earn a sizeable income letting it out for holidaymakers to enjoy. If you want any more financial incentive then consider that a small, 2-bedroom cottage in a desirable part of the country (such as the Lake District or the West Country), can bring in an income of around £12-£15,000 a year. A larger property could…

Derelict buildings or structures: who’s responsible?

If you own your own property, then you’re generally responsible for the upkeep of the building. The buck stops with you, whether the property is residential or commercial, and by law you have to ensure it’s safe for members of the public to enter or pass by. If a building falls into disrepair or becomes an eyesore, what rights do neighbours have to force the owner to secure, renovate or, at the very least, tidy up a bit? Impacting the value of your home A run-down property with boarded-up windows,…

Landlords – your legal obligations regarding smoke alarms, CO detectors and other safety features

All landlords have to fulfil certain legal obligations if they’re to rent their property. Some of the most important legal requirements are those that cover basic safety practices and equipment. Keeping tenants safe should be a landlord’s principal concern, so ensuring that these obligations are met is of the utmost importance. Here, we take a look at what landlords have to do when it comes to fire, gas, and electrical safety and also detail the relevant UK legislation. Relevant legislation A landlord’s legal safety obligations are legislated for by a…

To make your home your castle, be sure who owns the drawbridge

The Government has announced plans to tackle unfair leaseholder arrangements on new build properties, but in the meantime, as the Spring housing market gets into full swing, it’s worth understanding the difference between freehold and leasehold property. Increasing property prices and high population densities have seen a big increase in the number of leasehold properties across the country, as houses are split into flats and new apartment blocks are built, so there are now 1.4 million leasehold houses across England. And while leasehold arrangements are generally seen as a simple…

How to delist a listed cottage or building

While listed buildings are often attractive, brimming with character and desirable purchases, then can come with potential headaches for the new owners. Listed buildings do not enjoy the freedom associated with new-builds. Often, listed cottages and buildings come with certain restrictions - it is part of the privilege of owning a dwelling that holds historic interest. These can include higher insurance premiums, when compared to non-listed buildings and the requirement for special permission to be granted for works to be undertaken on the property such as the building of an…

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