Commercial Property in the General Election


The promise of betterment appears as a general manifesto pledge for each of the political parties. We take a look in more detail. How would their policies affect property investors and commercial tenants if the policies were implemented as the candidates would have us believe?

There is a chronic shortage of housing stock in the south east which has had the effect of inflating property prices beyond the reach of the average house-buyer. Investors with residential property portfolios are finding it harder to buy property due to the lack of supply whilst at the same time rental income from such portfolios has soared.

What are the parties promising?

All of the parties pledge to introduce policies to alleviate the problem of house buying for the ordinary buyer. We have a quick look at the main parties’ promises:

  • The Conservative Party propose to extend the right to buy to housing association tenants, to continue offering funding with the Help to Buy scheme and a new ISA for first time buyers with a contribution to the fund from central government
  • The Labour Party intends to legislate to prevent excessive rent rises and support builders in their goal to provide 200,000 new homes a year by 2020 and they have announced the intention to scrap SDLT for first time buyers up to a value of £300,000 until 2018 (although whether this will in the short term slow down the housing market remains to be seen)
  • The Liberal Democrats set an ambitious goal of 300,000 new homes a year delivered through prioritising planning applications for brownfield sites.

What does the industry think?

The British Property Federation has updated its 3R’s manifesto promoting the commercial property industry. The 3R’s represent Regeneration, Real Estate Investment Trusts and Reasonable Tax and Regulation and these basic 3R’s are still key to their 2015 manifesto.

The BPF calls upon the next government to:

  • reduce bureaucracy to enable regeneration initiatives to be realised
  • establish a cross departmental strategy for the private rented sector to realise the potential of the contribution which the private rented sector can make to solving the shortage in housing supply
  • to review council tax
  • to review business rates
  • to review the Community Infrastructure Levy.  

The next government has a lot of work to do to improve the housing market and the built environment to ensure that real estate continues to contribute to economic growth in the UK.

Your property portfolio

Please contact us on 01708 229 444 for more information on any of the new policies that come into place. Visit the Commercial Property page to find out more about our services.

This article was written by Keeley Miller, Associate Solicitor in the Commercial Property Department at Pinney Talfourd Solicitors. This article is only intended to provide a general summary and does not constitute legal advice. Specific legal advice should be taken on each individual matter. This article is based on the law as at May 2015.


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