Agency chief comments on Theresa May’s housing “disaster”

First time buyers have finances stretched beyond their means, buy to let is attracting fewer investors because of taxes, and affordability has hit a critical level – and much of all that is because of the “disaster” that Theresa May has been in terms of housing policy.

That’s the view of Paul Smith, chief executive of the Haart company embracing six estate agency chains across the country.

“Theresa May’s legacy on home ownership has so far been a disaster. The ‘just about managing’ are further away from owning their own home than they ever have been, and the government’s feeble housing White Paper did not go anywhere near enough to get housebuilders building and the market moving” says Smith.

He was commenting on lending trend data released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders.

“Whilst there has been some recovery since the damaging introduction of a stamp duty surcharge last April, we still have a long way to go until we have a property market that is back to full health” says Smith.

“Data from our own branches shows that the number of landlords registering to buy is down 30 per cent on the year across England and Wales and it is clear that far fewer landlords are investing in property. This could have serious long-term consequences for the rental market and lead to higher rents, putting those who are trying to save for a deposit in an even more difficult position” he adds.