Are First Time Buyers Going to Benefit from the Budget?
Ahead of next week's budget, there is pressure on the Chancellor to cut stamp duty for first time buyers with accusations that it is suffocating the housing market.
A report from the London School of Economics said that stamp duty for an average-priced home 20 years ago was less than £1,000 but today's stamp duty land tax is a "heavy immediate tax on transactions that contributes to England's dysfunctional housing market".
"Getting help for that all important foot on the housing ladder is what many first time buyers need and I welcome anything to assist them", said property lawyer Sarah Major. "A property is more than bricks and mortar, it's a home and if stamp duty is cut, I would expect the Twixmas house hunting period between Christmas and New Year to be busier than ever".
It is thought that stamp duty is preventing 45,000 house purchases a year, with first-time buyers, home movers and downsizers all affected.
If brought forward, it is unlikely that the policy would provide a full tax break to homes of any value being bought by first-time buyers.
Stamp duty only applies to homes worth £125,000 or more, above which a tiered system levies homes more heavily depending on their value. Since 2016, people buying second homes or rental flats have been taxed an extra 3 per cent.
"It's no surprise that stamp duty is stifling so many people trying to move up and down property chains. Young people want to escape the rent trap, and if the Chancellor does help them out next week we would welcome it", added Sarah.
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