The government has revealed a £2m fund to find a digital tool to help first-time buyer rental payments count toward affordability calculations for a mortgage application.
As part of the Autumn Budget, the government announced a £2m competition for fintech firms to develop “innovative solutions that help first‑time buyers ensure their history of meeting rental payments on time is recognised in their credit scores and mortgage applications”.
The Treasury said: “Mortgage lenders and credit reference agencies are often unable to take rental payment history into account as they do not have access to this data. This competition will support firms to solve this problem.”
The development will be seen as a victory for campaigner Jamie Pogson from Plymouth who initially raised the issue as a Parliament petition, which HM Treasury rejected as a concept.
His campaign eventually saw a Westminster debate in which economic secretary to the Treasury Stephen Barclay said he was keen to see rental payments included on UK credit profiles.
For all Mortgage Solutions’ Budget coverage on the first-time buyer stamp duty exemption and the boost for small business click on the links.
The government has also launched changes to rental benefits and published the Chancellor’s speech in full.
An extension of Council Tax liabilities for unoccupied homes was announced and the Office for Budget Responsibility and Building Societies Association have criticised the stamp duty cut.
Meanwhile Mortgage Solutions has dug out a series of hidden measures and rounded-up the best of the coverage.
Owain Thomas is Features and Contributing Editor at Mortgage Solutions. He has previously covered the protection and mortgage industry, more recently he edited Workplace Savings and Benefits, and HRD Connect.
Owain won the Financial Healthcare Journalist of the Year (B2B) at the Headline Money Awards in 2014 and 2016. He also won the Protection Review's Journalist of the Year award in 2012.