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Northeast builder issues challenge to the Treasury

In a move which will no doubt catch the attention of first-time buyers in the north-east of England, Meadowcroft, a housing company in the region, has announced plans to offer financial assistance to first-time buyers. The company already offers a significant advice service regarding the various government rescue packages and mortgage schemes available, but they now believe it is time to go one step further.

Currently homes up to £175,000 in value are exempt from stamp duty to the end of 2009 although Meadowcroft has now offered to pay in full any stamp duty liabilities on homes acquired before 1 June. This is more relevant to the company itself as it currently has a number of homes available in the £200,000 to £240,000 region. While the offer to pay stamp duty on homes over and above £175,000 in value may seem fairly small, it could offer significant savings for first-time buyers and secondary market buyers as well.

Like so many builders around the UK, Meadowcroft welcomed the various moves announced in the budget but now believes the government should and could have gone further. It would appear that now is the time to roll out the promotions, funding assistance and try to inject some confidence back into the market place. How long this will take and what would be required is still very much open to debate.

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