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Property bodies call upon Chancellor to consider SDLT reforms in Spring Budget

With the Spring Budget just around the corner, property bodies are calling upon Chancellor Philip Hammond to consider reforms to Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT).

Property Week, which had previously launched the Call Off Duty campaign following the Chancellor’s ‘missed opportunity’ to reform SDLT during his Autumn Statement announcements, has sent a petition signed by more than 100 companies and property bodies to the Government, calling for change.

The petition and accompanying letter outline five demands to the Chancellor which Property Week believes are crucial to address current issues in the market.

These five suggestions are:

  • Exempt first-time buyers from SDLT.
  • Exempt downsizers from SDLT, or offer downsizers ‘tax breaks’ to encourage them to move.
  • Adjust SDLT tax brackets to increase funding for affordable homes.
  • Lower the top rates of SDLT.
  • Abolish the three per cent surcharge on second home purchases.

The suggestions follow concerns raised by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) that unfavourable SDLT changes announced in recent years –  such as a three per cent SDLT surcharge payable upon purchase of second homes – are having a negative impact on rental supply and demand, with an increasing number of landlords scaling back their property portfolios.

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