As one of the largest cohorts of home purchasers across the UK, first-time buyers (FTBs) have been exceptionally active in recent months given the combination of both savings and liquidity available through schemes such as Help to Buy (HTB) and the Stamp Duty Holiday. British property portal Zoopla found that between August and October 2020, Luton had the highest concentration of prospective FTBs in the UK. This reflects pronounced growth in transactions across well-connected commuter zones, in the East of England especially, as lenders re-introduce financing options apace targeted at first time buyers.
The Telegraph reports that Google searches for “first-time buyers”, “new build homes” and “houses for sale UK” rose 50 per cent, 34 per cent and 64 per cent respectively in November 2020 compared to 2019. Key to this surge has been the HTB scheme, which has already enabled 270,000 people to secure a property. According to government data, 82 per cent of the people, who have used the scheme so far, have been first-time buyers. Changes due in March 2021 will mean the scheme is singularly open to this cohort. From December 16, FTBs can start applying for the new scheme with a minimum cash deposit of only 5 per cent.
Luton in Bedfordshire has long been recognised as a unique commuter hub with excellent growth prospects, outstanding transport links (including Luton Airport), as well as significant regeneration credentials, which bode well for its capital appreciation prospects.
Relative to housing options in London (which generally require much larger deposits), FTBs surveying the market for value are highly attracted to the affordability of Luton. Whilst areas like Islington (at number 9 on the Zoopla list) require a deposit of £26,250 (5 per cent) to afford a typical house price of £525,000 using HTB, Luton buyers require a deposit of £12,500 on average for a typical £250,000 house price. This is especially poignant for buyers partaking in the first phase of the multiple-award-winning Lu2on development due to complete in Q4 2021, where asking prices of £220,000 represent significant value.
Lu2on offers 877 residential units, including studio, 1-bed and 2-bed apartments, an 8,000 sq ft gym, perfect for active residents as well as a star hotel, public realm (10,000 sqm), restaurants and shopping. The award-winning retailer Co-Op will operate a supermarket (5,371 sq ft) fronting Kimpton Road and Luton Airport Parkway Railway Station, which is just 2-min walk from the development.
Ideal for FTBs, especially, London-based working professionals and young families, the commute time by train to King’s Cross, St. Pancras Station, London, is just 23 minutes. Luton offers the best of both worlds – a modern town with excellent business opportunities and accommodation that has beautiful countryside on its doorstep, as well as being a wonderful place to live and work.
Strawberry Star is currently offering 2-years’ service charge free for buyers in December. Two years’ worth of service charge could save you between £1,990 and £3,605, depending on the size of the apartment. With off-plan sales soaring, Lu2on’s future community is beginning to take shape. To learn more about Lu2on and offers for buyers, please call 01582262042.
The quality of the Lu2on facilities draws parallels with the luxury apartments London provides. Luton offers the best of both worlds – a modern town with excellent business opportunities and accommodation that has beautiful countryside on its doorstep, as well as being a wonderful place to live and work. As a London commuter belt town, Luton offers first-class infrastructure, with high-speed travel into Central London, easy access to the M1, M6 and M25 motorways, and, of course, Luton Airport, which offers connectivity to 30+ countries and 150 unique destinations across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.