Conservatives prove a hit with young home buyers

Recent research released by the Halifax Generation Rent has provided some insight into the Conservatives‘ surprise majority victory at the 2015 General Election, writes Richard Carr.

Conservatives in-tune

Richard Carr Halifax Generation Rent

Conservatives in-tune according to the Generation Rent report

The research suggests that the Conservatives proposed housing policies had the most appeal to young voters.

Policies such as getting empty homes back into the market received a good response from the youngsters surveyed by the Halifax Generation Rent report, which provides ongoing insight into the attitudes and behaviour of young people towards home ownership.

Interestingly though, it was a Liberal Democrat policy that came out as the top rated policy. The party’s proposal to increase the supply of housing by giving greater powers to local authorities was given a big thumbs up by the youngsters polled.

Elsewhere, five of the top nine policies were from the Conservative party. Their Rent to Buy scheme and new Right to Buy scheme both ranked highly.

Turn proposals into plans

Generation rent participants felt most strongly about increasing the supply of homes and would like to see the Conservatives turn their proposals into concrete plans.

“Housing was a major issue during the general election campaign and political parties of all hues acknowledged that more needs to be done to help first time buyers. However, this now needs to translate into concrete plans during the next Parliament,” said Craig McKinlay, mortgages director at the Halifax told

Help-to-Buy set to continue

After introducing the Help-to-Buy scheme during their first term, the Conservatives plan to extend the equity loan scheme for new build homes until at least 2020. This scheme proved particularly popular amongst first time buyers with 56% expressing approval.

In the first two years of the scheme some 47,018 properties were bought with an equity loan.

“The majority of Generation Renters participants believe Help to Buy has had a positive impact, and its good news that the schemes will be carrying on for a number of years yet. However, the fact that 39% either don’t know or are undecided demonstrates that more work is needed to educate people as to the benefits and how the schemes work,” said McKinlay.

Richard Carr believes that it’s great news, however urgent attention is needed to enlarge local planning authorities staffing, back to pre-2008 levels. Economic activity is being stifled by the log jam of applications and appeals that are not getting registered.

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