The Chancellor has today responded to calls from Propertymark to exempt first time buyers in England from paying stamp duty on properties under £300,000.
Those buying a property between £300,000 and £500,000 will not pay stamp duty on the first £300,000.
Mark Hayward, Chief Executive, NAEA Propertymark said:
"The announcement today from the Government will have a positive impact on the market. It’s a smart move to ensure the dream of homeownership for young people can become a reality and will help buyers across the UK, including London and the South East where property prices are higher.
"We do however need to realise that this move will increase the demand for first time buyer properties and if we don’t have the supply it will push prices up. We have seen this in areas where Help to Buy is offered, as it attracts a great deal of interest from first time buyers.
"In terms of the Government’s plans to build 300,000 new homes a year, it is yet another pledge to increase the number of new homes created. While we welcome this news, we have historically had these announcements from Government to accelerate housebuilding which has not been delivered. It is not a question of ‘how many’, it’s a question of ‘how’."
While vowing to protect green belt land, other measures included an announcement that over the next five years the Government will commit a total of at least £44bn to capital funding, loans and guarantees to support the housing market - to deliver 300,000 net additional homes a year on average by the mid 2020s.
Other measures included committing an additional £1.5 billion to the Home Builders Fund to get SME housebuilders building again. £1.1bn was committed to unlocking strategic sites while a £630m fund will be introduced to help unstick the delivery of 40,000 homes at small sites.
£8bn of new financial guarantees to support private housebuilding and the purpose built private rented sector were announced and local authorities were given the power to charge 100% council tax premiums on empty properties.
The Chancellor focused on homelessness, announcing investment of £28m in three 'housing first' pilots.
HMRC has provided NAEA Propertymark members with a guide to the changes:
Relief for first time buyers
A relief for first time buyers of residential properties costing no more than £500,000. First time buyers will pay no Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) on the first £300,000 of the purchase price, with the remainder being charged at 5%. No relief will be available where the total consideration exceeds £500,000.
The relief is not time limited and will apply to transactions with an effective date on or after 22 November 2017. Legislation will be introduced in the Finance Bill 2017 to 2018.
First time buyers can use the gov.co.uk/calculator to work out their STLD liability. To claim, relief code 32 should be entered at box 1.9 of SDLT return. If code 32 is entered on the online return, the return will calculate the tax due, except where the first time buyer is being granted a new lease. In such cases the gov.uk calculator should be used to work out the tax due.
Changes to the filing and payment process
Following the announcement at Spring Budget 2017, the SDLT filing and payment window reduction from 30 days to 14 days would be delayed until after April 2018. It has been confirmed that the changes will apply to land transactions with an effective date on or after 1 March 2019. Improvements are planned to the SDLT return which aim to make compliance with the new time limit easier. Legislation will be introduced in Finance Bill 2018 to 2019.
Minor amendments to higher rates of SDLT
Minor amendments to provide relief in certain cases including:
Additionally, legislation will be provided to prevent abuse of relief for replacement of a purchaser’s only or main residence by requiring the purchaser to dispose of the whole of their former main residence and to do so to someone who is not their spouse. The changes will apply from 22 November 2017. Legislation will be introduced in Finance Bill 2017 to 2018.
ATED: 2018 to 2019 annual chargeable amounts
The Annual Tax Enveloped Dwellings (ATED) annual charges will rise 3% from 1 April 2018 in line with the September 2017 Consumer Prices Index. A Treasury Order confirming the charges will be published shortly after Budget.
The new rates will be:
SD/SDRT/SDLT: Resolution of financial institutions
Legislation will be introduced in Finance Bill 2018 to 2019 to ensure that Stamp Duty, Stamp Duty Reserve Tax (SDRT) and Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) are not chargeable twice on exercise of resolution powers under the UK special resolution regime for managing failing financial institutions.
The exemption will be limited to the temporary transfer of shares or land to a bridge entity and the transfer of shares in exchange for temporary certificates issued to creditors that identify their entitlement to the shares. This will simplify and strengthen the process of resolving a failed financial institution and help to ensure that the “no creditor worse off” principle is upheld. The change will have effect on and after Royal Assent of Finance Bill 2018 to 2019.
SDRT: 1.5% charge on the issue of shares
The Government will continue to not apply the Stamp Duty and Stamp Duty Reserve Tax (SDRT) 1.5% charge on the issue of shares (and transfers integral to capital raising) into overseas clearance services and depositary receipt issuers following the UK’s exit from the European Union.
Following a Court of Justice of the EU judgement in the case of HSBC Holdings PLC and Vidacos Nominee Ltd v Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) (C569/07) and a subsequent First Tier Tribunal judgement in the case of HSBC Holdings PLC and the Bank of New York Mellon Corporation v Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs  UKFTT 163 (TC), HMRC accepts that the charge is incompatible with the Capital Duty Directive.
Mark Hayward FNAEA
Chief Executive NAEA Propertymark
Credit for blog article: NAEA Propertymark