This morning, Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng announced new Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) rates for England and Northern Ireland as part of the UK Government’s mini-budget.
At the Growth Plan statement on Friday 23 September 2022 the Chancellor announced changes to the SDLT in England and Northern Ireland.
The SDLT-free threshold is being raised from £125,000 to £250,000 – and for first-time buyers (FTBs) it will rise from £300,000 to £425,000. The value of properties upon which FTBs can claim relief will also increase from £500,000 to £625,000.
These changes are live from 23rd September.
This is a huge step to helping first-time buyers get on the property ladder, especially during the extreme fuel and gas price inflation. In fact, Kwarteng confirmed these steps will take 200,000 more people out of paying stamp duty altogether.
In October 2022 you buy a house for £295,000. The SDLT you owe will be calculated as follows:
- 0% on the first £250,000 = £0
- 5% on the final £45,000 = £2,250
- total SDLT = £2,250
FTBs will get a relief and will pay less or no tax if both the following apply:
- They and anyone they are buying with, are first-time buyers
- The purchase price is £625,000 or less
FTBs are eligible if all purchasers are first-time buyers.
You are a first-time buyer and purchase a property for £500,000. The SDLT you owe will be calculated as:
- 0% on the first £425,000 = £0
- 5% on the remaining £75,000 = £3,750
- total SDLT = £3,750
The rules have not changed for higher rate taxpayers and clients will need to pay 3% on top of SDLT rates if buying a new residential property if it means they will own more than one.
This is obviously good news for first-time buyers and will have very beneficial changes for many property buyers as the rate thresholds have increased across the board.
Since COVID we have now seen three very significant changes to SDLT. In both previous “Stamp Duty Holidays” we saw a real surge in the housing market in terms of record numbers of sales and purchases. Many conveyancing firms like PLS saw huge increased volumes in sales and purchases during and leading up to the cut offs of those two SDLT holidays. Whether such numbers in sales and purchases would have happened anyway, albeit over longer periods instead of all happening at once in concentrated peaks, is difficult to tell. But we do know that, in the last two years, the housing market industry has remained as strong as it has ever been, in terms of volumes and of house prices. We can be sure that was down at least in part to the tax reductions. Other factors may well have come from the effects of COVID, including people wanting more space, or just a change, or having more spare cash saved from a reduction in leisure activities or travel. Today’s news is clear evidence that the Government regards the previous SDLT cuts as an effective means of keeping the housing market stimulated.
When an immediate change like this is made, whilst it is great news for buyers, there is always a bit of a strain on our conveyancers. At PLS we will be spending a lot of today re-calculating our SDLT sums and refunding some lucky clients. We will then spend most of the weekend re-calculating our quotes and client completion statements and getting as much information out to our clients to let them know of the changes. It will be a long weekend for us – but we know it will all be very positive for many of our clients.
How can PLS help?
Our experts can give you advice and support on what these changes mean to you and your home buying plans, contact us to have your questions answered.
You can also use our Stamp Duty calculator to find out how much you have to pay but remember as a first-time buyer, you will not pay any SDLT on your first £425,000!