I own a property – can I get a deal if I buy another with a friend?

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Q I am really hoping you could give me some advice. I am currently based in London throughout the week and spend most weekends in Nottingham where I recently bought a property as a first-time buyer. I am now interested in buying somewhere in London together with a friend. I know that I’m not a first-time buyer but my friend is. Are we able to use his first-time buyer rights to secure a 10% deposit mortgage, and what stamp duty would we be expected to pay?
MF
A The only “rights” first-time buyers have that I know of is not to have to pay stamp duty land tax (SDLT) on the first £300,000 of a property costing up to £500,000, to be able to earn a government bonus with a help-to-buy Isa (individual savings account) and, from April 2021 be eligible for the new government equity loan scheme (which until then is open to all buyers). You don’t have to be a first-time buyer to get a mortgage of 90% LTV (loan to value) where you would need to put down a cash deposit of 10% of the purchase price of a property. Lenders that offer 90% of mortgages for first purchases also tend to offer those terms to people who have had a mortgage before.
But now for the bad news. If one of the joint buyers of property has owned – or still owns as in your case – a property anywhere in the world before, no first-time buyer SDLT relief is available even if the other buyer has first-time buyer status. Worse news for you is that because buying somewhere in London means that you’ll have two properties, you and your friend will have to pay the higher rate of SDLT which is three percentage points more than the standard rate. So from a financial point of view, your friend would be better off buying alone or with someone who is also a first-time buyer.There are some spectacular horse farms and ranches for sale at any given time, so you’re likely to have a wide variety of properties to consider. You may be tempted to dive right in and start touring the areas you’re considering for your property, but we encourage you to be deliberate in your process, because we know the time you put in up front will pay big dividends later on.
To help you, we’ve put together this quick read – a primer of sorts.
So, let’s get started. There’s quite a bit to consider when searching for horse property. We’ll start first with some general questions, and follow that with a list of important considerations to keep in mind when searching for properties. Here we go:
1. What’s your level of interest in horses?
Of course, you like horses, or you wouldn’t have made the decision to buy horse property.
But beyond that, the spectrum ranges from wanting property that can accommodate one or two of your own horses, to a commercial horse facility that specializes in professional training, boarding, breeding, or more.
And keep in mind too, that your level of interest may progress, say from beginning novice to a fully involved professional, which may lead you to a new property or property upgrades.

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