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More Homes Needed for Older Home Owners and Renters

A new report recommends changes to property stock provision and Stamp Duty to drive supply

Stamp Duty Break & More Specialist Housing Required for Older Residents in the UK

The UK housing market is need of a significant increase in the number of properties built for older generations, according to a new report.

Research from the Policy Exchange has projected that, with an ageing population, the UK property sector needs to adapt in order to better meet the demands of baby boomers looking for suitable retirement properties in both the sales and rental markets.

Highlighting the challenges for older people who are not wealthy enough to afford the higher end of the property market and who are ineligible for social housing – placing them in direct competition with first time buyers – the report emphasized the opportunities available for developers looking to provide attractive private options.

‘Retirement housing needs to be seen by baby boomers as a more desirable option, a challenge that is regularly being failed,’ said the report. ‘Too often retirement housing is associated with care homes.’

According to data from McCarthy & Stone, just 162,000 purpose-built retirement homes have been built in the UK to date.

To combat this shortfall, The Policy Exchange publication proposed a Stamp Duty tax break, similar to the one introduced by the government for first time buyers in 2017, recommending the removal of the tax on properties from £125,000 to £250,000 for older property owners looking to downsize.

‘If more homes are built for the baby boomer generation, and people are provided greater choice in the housing market as they enter old age, many more ageing home owners will be attracted to downsize,’ said the report.

Last week, official figures revealed that more than 180,000 first time buyers benefited from the Stamp Duty tax break in the third quarter of this year, following the successful implementation of the policy.

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