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James Caan backs the sellers

publication date: May 26, 2010
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James CaanLast year Caan’s property portal, launched a £1bn fund to offer interest free loans to people desperate to get on to the property ladder. It is designed to help people afford stamp duty, legal fees and other expenses linked to buying a home.

The idea has proved so successful look4aProperty is now funding a similar scheme to help property sellers. The Dragons' Den star is launching the new initiative at Newton Fallowell, an estate agency chain based in Mrs Thatcher’s former constituency, Grantham, Lincolnshire.

“We’ve had impressive take-up across the country from people wanting to borrow that extra money to cover the costs of moving or buying their first home. Now we are providing loans – interest free to people wanting to sell,” says Caan.

“It was the obvious next step to give the country’s housing market a boost. We set out to bring liquidity to the market. To do that, we need people buying and selling.”

Despite ultra low interest rates the housing market has been frozen by fear since the economic crisis gripped the country in 2007. Caan, who runs a number of property investment businesses, says people have been holding back because feel they aren’t able to fund many of those unavoidable expenses associated with buying and selling property.

“These items represent an expense too far for many people. The Look4aProperty money product is designed to remove that obstacle,” he says.

The scheme is available to anyone through a network of estate agents who have signed up to the fund across the UK.

Despite signs that property prices are rising – one report from the Nationwide put the rise in the last year at 10 per cent – the market is not moving. Caan believes the more incentives to inject some liquidity into the market the more the economy will benefit.