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What would a Starmer Labour Government mean for housing and mortgages?

What would a Starmer Labour Government mean for housing and mortgages?
George Sweeney

Author: George Sweeney - Content Writer

Updated: July 25, 2022

There’s plenty of change brewing at the top of British politics and as the Conservative contenders do battle, some people are looking even further ahead. With possible fractures appearing in the Tory Party, people are starting to wonder what the alternative might look like.

So, what would a Labour Government led by Keir Starmer mean for homes and mortgages?

What will Labour do about housing?

With house prices seemingly on a never-ending treadmill reaching higher and higher, support for first-time buyers (FTBs) is becoming a point of contention for both parties.

The policy plans from Labour right now are to follow through on three major areas:

  • Make rent prices more affordable.
  • Give first-time buyers an exclusive 6-month opportunity to buy new build properties.
  • Restrict developers from selling more than 50% of properties to buyers from abroad.

The idea behind this three-pronged approach is:

  1. Make sure that first time buyers aren’t paying through the nose for rent, allowing them to actually save up for a deposit to buy a house.
  2. Granting a window of dedicated time so that first-time buyers for new builds can purchase properties without having to fend off competition from potentially more attractive buyers based at home (or internationally) who have deeper pockets.

Plans for eco homes

Labour’s housing agenda doesn’t stop with first-time buyers. There have been previous statements made by the Party that it will attempt to make homes more climate-friendly over the coming decade.

Here’s how they plan on tackling housing-related climate issues:

  • Spending £6bn over 10 years, retrofitting homes to a minimum standard of EPC band C.
  • Offering grants to low-income households and giving other households the option to use low-interest loans.
  • Previous estimates (before price cap increases) were that this would save households a minimum of £400 a year on energy bills.

How does this differ from Conservative home mortgage plans?

Here’s how the Conservative housing policy manifesto stacks up. And, what they’re promoting as solutions to problems surrounding mortgages and UK housing:

  • Renewing the Affordable Homes Programme (but with no specific targets).
  • Investing £3.6bn with the Towns Fund to regenerate 100 locations across the UK.
  • Increasing the supply of rental properties and providing more protection for tenants.

The pledges are somewhat vaguer than what’s being offered by the Labour Party. But perhaps this is a case of the Conservative Party choosing not to promise outcomes they’re not sure they can deliver, or can be afforded by the government.

What could happen with UK mortgages and housing after a general election

Both Parties seem keen on the idea of increasing the housing supply. To make homes more affordable and to potentially reduce rents.

However, it does seem like the Conservative Party is willing to flirt with more ‘outside-the-box’ ideas, such as 40 and 50-year mortgages.

Boris Johnson may be gone, but his words of wanting to ‘find all sorts of creative ways to help people into ownership’ are likely to be taken on by whomever he passes the torch to.

Only time will tell if either Party follows through on their promises to solve the housing and mortgage issues we’re facing here in the UK. And, what the state of these markets might look like following a general election.

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of the most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs.

Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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