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First time buyer - am I classified as such?

Hi all,

I am looking to buy in the next year but I am not 100% sure if I qualify for first-time buyer status. I have never bought a property in the UK or abroad, but I am one of three named trustees of a trust set up to administer my mother's house. Does this technically mean I am a homeowner? And, even if so, how would a mortgage lender/HMRC know that this is the case?

Thanks!

Comments

  • boots_babe
    boots_babe Posts: 3,222
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    Gosh, what a harsh response! I don't think the post comes across that way at all. I read the OP, and actually thought I would be wondering the same in their position.

    The fact that they are asking for advice here surely points to them not wanting to make a mistake with stamp duty? If they wanted to 'defraud' theyd just go ahead without trying to find out the facts.

    OP I can't help you I'm sorry as I don't know, but hopefully someone more friendly will come along to advise you soon.
  • chanz4
    chanz4 Posts: 10,842
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    No as the trust owns it
    Don't put your trust into an Experian score - it is not a number any bank will ever use & it is generally a waste of money to purchase it. They are also selling you insurance you dont need.
  • Albermarle
    Albermarle Posts: 20,994
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    chanz4 said:
    No as the trust owns it
    That was also what I thought.
  • Neil49
    Neil49 Posts: 3,010
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    In the circumstances you describe, you are a first time buyer. End of story. 

  • SDLT_Geek
    SDLT_Geek Posts: 2,424
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    Gosh, what a harsh response! I don't think the post comes across that way at all. I read the OP, and actually thought I would be wondering the same in their position.

    The fact that they are asking for advice here surely points to them not wanting to make a mistake with stamp duty? If they wanted to 'defraud' theyd just go ahead without trying to find out the facts.

    OP I can't help you I'm sorry as I don't know, but hopefully someone more friendly will come along to advise you soon.
    Yes, sorry, not my usual style at all!  I must have been feeling a bit righteous when I replied before.  Leaving aside the follow up "even if so" question I can, to make amends, be more helpful on the main question.

    There was an area of doubt as to SDLT first time buyers' relief in the case of people who hold the title to a residential property as trustee only, because in some sense they do hold a "major interest" in the property, within the meaning of the legislation.  The legislation is unclear, as is the official guidance https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/stamp-duty-land-tax-relief-for-first-time-buyers-guidance-note (which has been withdrawn anyway).  There was some helpful correspondence between HMRC and the Society of Tax and Estates Practitioners with letters dated 1 July 2022 and 2 March 2023.  HMRC confirmed that holding a property merely as trustee (with no beneficial interest) does not prevent that person from qualifying as a first time buyer when buying in their personal capacity.

    It would be different if, under the terms of the trust, the person has a right to part of the income from the property, or a right to live in the property for life.


  • Trust owns it so no. First time buyer applies unless you own a property. FTB is a bit misleading really, it's more like "Are you an owner?" 

    You're not, so you're okay. If you've set up the trust to avoid getting smashed by local authorities for care fair play as well.
  • Albermarle
    Albermarle Posts: 20,994
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    You're not, so you're okay. If you've set up the trust to avoid getting smashed by local authorities for care fair play as well.

    Firstly if it has been done for this reason, the local authority is within its rights to ignore the trust status and count the house value. It is called Deliberate Deprivation of Assets, and is anything but fair play.

    Secondly it would not be sensible for someone with assets to throw themselves at the mercy of council funded care, especially as they are very strapped for cash and the quality and provision of adult social care is very variable.

  • Hi All,

    Thanks for going to the effort to reply and giving the clarification, much appreciated.

    The property was put into trust many years ago btw.
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