Ed Balls MP, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor, responding to revelations that the government’s mortgage scheme will not exclude people buying second homes, said:
"Not only is George Osborne pressing ahead with a tax cut for millionaires it now seems that his mortgage scheme will help people, no matter how high their income, to buy a subsidised second home worth up to £600,000.
"The Government is basically saying that if you’ve got a spare room in a social home you’ll have to pay the bedroom tax, but if you want a spare home we’ll help you buy one.
"Is the Government really going to give millionaires a tax cut averaging £100,000 and then give them a taxpayer guarantee if they use that money as a deposit on a house - a second home or even a home to buy to let? Not just tax cuts for millionaires but subsidised mortgages for millionaires.
"Surely people struggling to get a mortgage and those who want to own their first home must be the priority for help, not the small number who can afford to buy a second one. We will only tackle the housing crisis and help first time buyers if we finally build the new affordable homes we have said should be at the heart of any proper plan for jobs and growth.
"This more of the same Budget stuck with a plan that is completely failing on growth, living standards and the deficit, but the one new thing George Osborne announced is already unravelling."