Next month’s Autumn Budget: is stamp duty reform on the cards?

Written on 20 October 2017 by Giles Cook in Property News

Stamp duty increases have been blamed for slowing market activity at all levels, including for buyers in Belgravia, but there is a possibility the subject of stamp duty will feature in next month’s Autumn Budget.


Calls to reform stamp duty to help first-time buyers, especially those in London, have been vociferous. The prohibitive cost of stamp duty placed on top of everything else first-time buyers have to pay has harmed mobility at the lower end of the market, while affecting movement at the top end of the market.  

Recently, The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) called for stamp duty to be paid by vendors and not buyers. But it warns against the government only addressing the needs of first-time buyers.  

Head of Public Affairs and Public Policy at the AAT, Phil Hall, said that by making stamp duty a tax which vendors have to pay, this would “address generational fairness by immediately removing all first-time buyers from the tax whilst simultaneously protecting the £8.6 billion of much needed revenue that it generates.” 

But stamp duty has had an impact on buyers across the board, including in prime central London with high-value properties. Furthermore, since the additional 3% stamp duty surcharge was introduced in April 2016, it’s been reported that people are still confused by its application.  

As calls for stamp duty reform continue, we wait to see what Chancellor Philip Hammond has to say in the Autumn Budget next month.  

The Chancellor has announced the date of the Autumn Budget as Wednesday 22nd November 2017.  

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Giles Cook

Giles recently joined Best Gapp in 2017 as Partner Designate and Head of Residential Agency, bringing over 20 years’ experience to the firm. Following a three-year stint as an Area Director for Foxtons, he went on to head up Chestertons’ sales and lettings operations in central London, before becoming a Partner at top Knightsbridge boutique WA Ellis.

All articles by Giles Cook


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