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Government to raise record tax from property sales. Time for a cut then

Official figures show that £7.7bn has been raised from stamp duty land tax (SDLT) during the first eight months of the 2016-17 financial year, up 12% on the same period last year. Despite a 10% fall in the number of homes being sold, the exchequer’s revenue from stamp duty is predicted to exceed the previous record of £10.7bn raised during 2015-16.

The increase in tax takings reflects changes to stamp duty in the past two years, as well as the continued rise in house prices, up 7% in the past year.

In December 2014, the SDLT system was overhauled cutting tax for the 95% of buyers who buy homes worth less than £1m, but increasing it for those buying high value properties. Then in April this year, a 3% SDLT surcharge was brought in for anyone buying a second home meaning that investors would have to pay much more than they did previously.

For many developers, early off-plan investor purchases are vital for securing development funding and therefore their ability to bring new homes to fruition. So – in reality – a policy aimed at giving first time buyers the edge over investors – might do the exact opposite by limiting the supply of new homes.

With an ongoing housing crisis, the Government should be encouraging investment by making it less expensive to purchase new homes. With a record tax take from property sales expected, we think they can afford to cut the 3% surcharge on second home purchases so developers like us can get on with what we do best – building new homes.

If you’re an investor looking to boost returns by getting in early, or a first time buyer ready to move in, contact our sales team on 020 8688 6552 to find out what’s available. We have new developments in Croydon, Sutton, Epsom, Crawley, Chertsey and Manchester – some are just getting off the ground and others are ready to move in.

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