In the news for February

Your need-to-know news and numbers: March 2024.

05 Mar 2024 | 4 min

So much news and insight to read in the world of finance and property, so little time. But don’t worry, we’ve done the hard work for you.

Here’s a handy wrap up of some of February’s trending stories, to help you keep on top of those all-important numbers for March and beyond.


That’s the average house price jump in January 2024, according to figures from Halifax released last month. The average cost of a UK home has climbed for the fourth month in a row – positive news for those looking to sell their home.

Commenting on the figures in the Manchester Evening News last month, James Briggs, Together’s Head of Personal Finance, said, “A rise in house prices indicates a heartening shift in market confidence. While we are still early in the year, mortgage rates are beginning to fall as lenders anticipate a calming of inflation and possible falls in the Bank of England base rate in the next few months. This relative stability could create clear opportunities for buyers to get a foot on the ladder for the first time.".


Similarly, optimism echoes through the commercial property market too – with secured commercial lending predicted to rise by 32% by 2028. This will see an estimated £118bn of lending issued, according to Rob Thomas, economist and principal researcher at the Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA).

The article cites a report that found 30% of property developers list inflation as their biggest challenge in 2024, with 27% saying high interest/mortgage rates will also be problematic.

There are loads more insights in the new report – Opportunities and Outlook: The future of commercial property. Read it here now.

90 nights

That’s the threshold for new holiday property rules being introduced in England, following an announcement from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

People renting out their main home for less than 90 nights a year, along with hotels, hostels and B&Bs, will be unaffected by the new controls. But holiday lets outside of the criteria will be subject to new restrictions to stop the ‘hollowing’ of communities in popular spots - where people are being priced out of their local areas due to an increase in short-term lets through websites such as Airbnb. The changes mean people may need to seek permission from the council to turn their home into a short-term let.


… of 2,400+ brokers anticipate an increase in the use of alternative lenders in 2024, according to the NACFB’s new report. Painting a picture of a market crying out for specialist finance support, 70% of broker-led transactions in 2023 were placed with either specialist lenders or challenger banks.

20 towns and cities

… will see planning authorities made to follow a new ‘brownfield presumption’, according to the government, making it easier to get permission to build on previously undeveloped brownfield sites. The bar for refusing brownfield plans will be made much higher for city councils who are failing to hit housebuilding targets.

This comes as Michael Gove announced the relaxing of planning laws to enable speedier development of empty high street shops, in a bid to build denser urban areas as an alternative to developing on protected Green Belt land.


… properties in one portfolio; that’s the good news story of Anthony Wheatley, the property developer who grew his business from renting washing machines in Scunthorpe to a property empire. His tale, featured in the The I, tells of his commercial and residential success – and acts as an illustration of the potential in the property industry as a career.

“It’s not easy,” said Anthony, “But it’s definitely rewarding.”


That’s the average house price rise in the last 50 years, according to new research released by Together. The average age of homeownership for millennials now stands at almost ten years higher than when the baby boomer generation got on the property ladder – says this article on Property Reporter.

Boomers who first bought a home in the 1970s are now less likely to consider property as an investment vehicle, compared to their millennial children who may be first time buyers. When asked how they would invest £25k or more, over half of millennials chose property - compared to just 17% of baby boomers. This is echoed by UK Finance’s Q4 2023 report, which revealed new loans to older borrowers decreasing by 37.1% year on year.

50 years

That’s the special birthday being celebrated by Together, alongside the brand new TV advertising campaign.

Together’s Chief Commercial Officer, Ryan Etchells, spoke to Prolific North:

“Our heritage demonstrates that we are a trusted partner and have used our expertise and strong relationship based approach to lending to help thousands of people settle down and scale up. It’s now time for us to shout more loudly about our common sense approach to lending which has been helping our customers realise their property ambitions for five decades.”

Find out more about how Together has been opening doors since 1974.

1.5 miles

Planning applications in a 1.5 mile radius of HS2’s new West Midlands stations and depots rose by 66%, compared with just 15% in the areas immediately outside. Alongside this, residential homes had increased fivefold since the line got a greenlight in 2017.

This comes as HS2 Ltd and the Department for Transport try to show the benefits of the project, following criticism by MPs who claim it offers ’very poor value’ for money.

The resulting research provides evidence of positive development opportunities as a result of the line, but many say this fails to justify the cost of the project so far.


… is the average monthly amount lent by Together in the final three months of 2023. Despite demand from property buyers being “strongly affected by volatility” in the mortgage market, with a loan book at £6.8bn, Together said there is optimism for demand growth in the coming months.



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Any property used as security, including your home, may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage or any other debt secured on it.

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