We will quickly break down some key points the Chancellor made:
The economy has been growing since 2010 and is projected to continue growing. The unemployment rate is at its lowest for over 40 years, there are over 3.3 million more people in work since 2010, and the OBR forecasts 800,000 more jobs by 2022.
The personal allowance threshold, the rate at which people start paying income tax at 20%, to rise from £11,850 to £12,500 and people start paying tax at 40%, to increase from £46,350 to £50,000 in April – a year earlier than planned.
| Minimum Wage:
Is to increase by 4.9%, from £7.83 to £8.21 an hour, from April 2019.
| Fuel duty:
In 2019, fuel duty will remain frozen for the ninth year in a row, saving the average driver £1,000 since 2010.
| Housing Market:
Homeowners have been holding off selling their homes with the uncertainty of Brexit, meaning the housing market has stalled in the past few months. Some economists, including the Governor of the Bank of England, have said house prices will plunge by as much as a third if the UK leaves the EU on 29 March 2019 without a deal. While in some areas of the UK house prices are starting to rise, we are seeing the London housing market beginning to fall for the first time in years.
| Stamp Duty:
Stamp duty has been abolished for all first-time buyers of shared ownership homes with a market value of up to £500,000.
First £125,000: 0%
£125,001 to £250,000: 2%
£250,001 to £925,000: 5%
£925,001 to £1.5m: 10%
Help to buy will be extending until 2023
An extra £500m is being given to councils, through the Housing Infrastructure Fund, to promote the building of 650,000 more homes.
| Social care and Schools:
£650 million for social care next year and £400 million extra for schools this year.
| More funding:
over £950 million more for the Scottish Government through to 2020-21
over £550 million more for the Welsh Government through to 2020-21
over £320 million more for a Northern Ireland Executive through to 2020-21
| Defence Funding:
The Ministry of Defence will receive an extra £1 billion to help protect the UK.
| Brexit Funding:
Extra £500m for preparations for leaving the EU
Spring Statement next March could be upgraded to full Budget if needed
A commemorative 50p coin to mark the UK’s departure from the EU
With the potential of the housing marketing falling, people are becoming more hesitant to put their houses on the market, with the hopes that the market will bounce back in the coming months after Brexit is agreed. If there is a no-deal Brexit, this could bring the governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, warnings to life. He has warned the cabinet that a no–deal Brexit could hit the economy as badly as it did back in 2008.
This leaves us asking the question, should this budget report have had some discussion, and budget, around the possibility of a no-deal Brexit. What will happen to the UK if Carney’s predictions are right and we are going into another financial crisis and the potential of another housing market crash?