A 3% increase the rate of stamp duty on buy-to-let and second homes, and a chunky pledge of extra funding for new housebuilding have set tongues wagging in the aftermath of the combined Autumn Statement and Spending Review, delivered by George Osborne on Wednesday afternoon.
Stamp duty news is – as you’d expect from any tax rise – pretty unpopular, with a real fear that rents will rise and investors scarper as a direct result, although there’s an underlying consensus that it seems like a fair way to raise extra revenues. There’s more lingering dissent about last year’s overhaul of SDLT, which is still bearing heavy on the top-end of the market.
And there are questions about the practicality of all this proposed new construction: we’re in the midst of a well-documented skills and brick shortage, so while the need for new homes is clear and present, the capability to deliver is rather more up in the air…
Yet another grenade thrown at the property market
Vic Chhabria, Managing Director, Rescorp
“The additional 3% stamp duty to be levied on Buy to Let mortgages is yet another grenade thrown at the property market. Transactions have already been hit hard at the upper level of the market however this is a blow to the occasional or first time property investor. So in essence, what the Government are saying is that if you want to buy property, and no matter at what level, you need to pay the piper and do so royally.”
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