Seaton has one of highest numbers of second homes in East Devon
- Credit: Archant
Seaton has one of the highest percentages of second homes in the district.
For every 19 homes in the town there is one second home, statistics from East Devon District Council have revealed.
A FOI request, submitted by the Herald, uncovered that out of the 4,231 properties in Seaton, 227 were second homes – meaning they made up around 5.4 per cent of the total number of dwellings.
The only other town with a higher percentage is Sidmouth – where around six per cent of the properties are second homes. For every 17 homes in the town there is one second home.
Exmouth has the highest number of second homes but the lowest percentage. There are 16,987 households in Exmouth and of these 422 are second homes, meaning they only make up around 2.6 per cent of the total number of properties.
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The Herald reached out to readers on Facebook asking them to share their views on second homes. Rhoda Snell, 53 of Seaton, commented: “Locals who have grown up here want to buy locally to stay near their family and then raise their own family but are unable to buy as non-locals have bought properties here as an investment.
“I think some way to give locals priority and make it affordable would be good.”
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Jude Marie Davidson, 39, of Honiton, added: “This has been the case for the last 30 years, never been able to buy as wages have been always low and I’ve mostly been single, even though there is a huge amount of money in the area.
“Second homes should be taxed heavily and buy to rents should be restricted or first time buyers should have first dibs. It’s always been ridiculous around here.”
Across Devon there are 69,333 households, with 2,339 being used as second homes. This has fallen by 2.8 per cent in the last three years and estate agents have suggested this is down to the increase on stamp duty when purchasing a second house.
Mike Dibble, a director at Bradleys Estate Agents, said anybody who bought a second home now paid an extra three per cent in stamp duty.
He added: “For example, if you are a first-time buyer and purchase a home for £250,000, the stamp duty would be £2,500.
“But, if you are buying a second home or a buy-to-let then you would pay an extra £7,500, paying a total of £10,000 in stamp duty.”
Mr Dibble added the estate agents sold ‘nowhere near’ as many second homes as they used to.
An East Devon District Council spokeswoman said: “There are a large number of second homes in East Devon for which the owners pay council tax in the same way as do all other home owners in the district.”
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