by: Mary-Anne Bowring/Daily Express
Rishi Sunak will deliver an economy and investment statement today, during which he will give an update on how he plans to steer the economy through the coronavirus crisis. According to reports, the Chancellor may announce a stamp duty 'holiday' for home buyers. Mr Sunak is said to be considering raising the threshold for when the tax kicks in from £125,000 to as much as £500,000. According to The Times, the increase - expected to be implemented in the Autumn Budget - is a temporary measure which is intended to stimulate the housing market. The publication reported that government sources said the temporary increase to the threshold could be up to a year. On an average house purchase of £233,000 in Britain, this represents a saving of £2,140. Mary-Anne Bowring, group managing director at Ringley and creator of automated lettings platform, PlanetRent, also commented on the news.
She said: “The Chancellor’s proposals to exempt most homebuyers from paying any stamp duty under plans to kick-start Britain’s economic recovery is welcome news. “A stamp duty holiday would no doubt cause a rush of transactions and help breathe life into a housing market that has been put into deep freeze in an effort to battle coronavirus. “The government should be looking at long-term solutions as well as short-term sticking plasters when it comes to fixing the UK housing market. “Millions of Brits were already renting, and that number was predicted to grow anyway with or without coronavirus.
"The disruption caused by coronavirus will likely see rental demand grow, as banks squeeze potential buyers with tighter lending restrictions and people put off buying or selling a home as it becomes clearer COVID-19 has caused continued uncertainty and disruption in the medium term. “Eliminating additional stamp duty for buy-to-let investors would help stimulate the supply of rental homes while also driving wider activity in the housing market. "Landlords are a crucial source of development finance through off-plan sales and will help support getting Britain building again.”
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