FTB stamp duty relief is to be scrapped - Autumn Statement

Published ¤ 29/11/2011 14:54:53

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The government has confirmed that they will not continue with the £250,000 stamp duty tax relief for first time buyers after March 24th 2012.

While George Osborne did not mention the holiday during his Autumn Statement, the full Treasury document reveals that it will end next year.
The government claims that the relief has been "ineffective in increasing the number of first time buyers entering the market".

The statement said: "This relief will therefore end on 24 March 2012 as planned.

"The government is instead prioritising more effective measures which provide better value for money as set out above and in Laying the Foundations: A Housing Strategy for England."
Grenville Turner, chief executive of Countrywide, said: "At a time where deposit affordability remains a significant barrier to not only first time buyers, it is disappointing that the Chancellor did not take the opportunity to extend the stamp duty holiday for first-time buyers and has instead added another barrier for first-time buyers to get onto the property ladder.
"A positive antidote to assist the vast majority of homemovers and the resale market would have been a stamp duty holiday for all homebuyers up to £250,000.

"Whilst the measures announced in the government's housing strategy are a step in the right direction, they only scratch the surface of the fundamental issues that have restricted the housing market in recent years-housing supply and the high level of deposits required.
"The prediction that 100,000 families will benefit from the Mortgage Indemnity Scheme may be optimistic, as we are yet to hear the detail of whether it enables lenders to offer cheaper rates."
Paul Skinner, managing director at PKS, one Hampshire's top mortgage brokers, said "This is not great news, although the government is right in that it has not been effective in tempting first time buyers to the market.

We may see in the next couple of months that the number of FTBs increasing sharply, as many try to get on the housing ladder while the relief is still available. After all, it can save up to £2,500 in tax."

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