First-time buyers 'returning to market since stamp duty cut'

Date:Thursday 1st April 2010

Hannah-Mercedes Skenfield, mortgage channel manager at, said visitors to the site were confident the cut would apply to new buyers but she was unsure what impact it would have on the greater market.

The price comparison site recorded a 15 per cent increase in the number of potential first-time buyers looking to buy a mortgage and 76 per cent of visitors have said the Budget cut was "fair" to this particular customer.

She added: "As we approach one of the busiest weekends of the year for house-hunting, the first-time buyer could well be back out after months of hibernation."

However, Ms Skenfield suggested that the mortgage market would only improve if lenders started to offer more competitive deals.

In response to February's Bank of England lending data, which showed a two per cent decline in mortgage approvals, the Council of Mortgage Lenders stated the number of people who will benefit from the stamp duty exemption will be "difficult to assess".