Property News

Chancellor Must Scrap Osborne’s Stamp Duty Reforms in Autumn Statement, Says SLC

Em Morley - October 4, 2016

The new Chancellor, Philip Hammond, should scrap his predecessor’s Stamp Duty reforms for landlords in the Autumn Statement, according to the Society of Licensed Conveyancers (SLC).

The organisation believes that the Government should be addressing real housing issues, rather than consulting on changes to Stamp Duty.

Chancellor Must Scrap Osborne's Stamp Duty Reforms in Autumn Statement, Says SLC

Chancellor Must Scrap Osborne’s Stamp Duty Reforms in Autumn Statement, Says SLC

The SLC has called upon Chancellor Philip Hammond to reverse George Osborne’s damaging attacks on the private rental sector, in order to stimulate the housing market.

As of 1st April 2016, buy-to-let landlords and second homebuyers are charged an additional 3% in Stamp Duty on property purchases.

The SLC warns the Chancellor that these “attacks” on landlords have had a significant impact on property investment, which consequently affects the whole housing market.

The Chairman of the Society, Simon Law, says: “In spite of some trying to talk the market up, there is no doubt that transaction levels and new housing building are being adversely affected by a number of factors. While some people point at uncertainty created by Brexit, it is the Society’s belief that Osborne’s punitive and unnecessary reforms to the taxation regime associated with private sector property investors and landlords have been the main cause.

“The reforms have also caused enormous confusion for property purchasers and their conveyancers, particularly in respect of Stamp Duty, resulting in frequent delays and even transaction failure.”

He insists: “There is a real and significant opportunity for the new Government under Theresa May to unlock economic growth very quickly by simply reversing the Osborne reforms in the Autumn Statement. There is no doubt that a robust property sector can help allay any fears of an economic downturn if swift action is taken.”

Hammond’s first Autumn Statement will take place on 23rd November.

The SLC is calling on other property stakeholders to back its call on the Chancellor for the benefit of all property investors and landlords, and ultimately, their tenants. It reminds the Government that investment leads to construction, and a greater supply of housing keeps rent levels in check.

Yesterday, the Chancellor announced that he is focused on boosting housebuilding in order to tackle the housing crisis, rather than reducing the deficit.

Do you believe that abolishing the Stamp Duty reforms for landlords will help resolve the housing crisis?