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UK Stamp Duty Holidays - Latest News

This week the UK chancellor announced a stamp duty holiday, which will exempt all properties sold in England and Northern Ireland from stamp duty tax up to the value of £500,000.

From the current threshold of £125,000, this new tax limit is immediately available and will remain in place until March 2021 to help the property market bounce back quickly from the impact of Covid-19.

UK Stamp Duty & What it Means for UK Property Buyers

Stamp duty is a tax payable by property buyers on top of the cost of buying a new home. The exact rates vary in different places, and the tax is also known as Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT).

Scottish property buyers pay a slightly different tax called Land and Buildings Transaction Tax, and in Wales, this is referred to as Land Transaction Tax.

These new changes announced in the Summer Statement apply only to properties in England and Northern Ireland.

New Stamp Duty Rates

The government's announcement that the stamp duty threshold has been raised to £500,000 is excellent news for UK property buyers! This new threshold remains in place until 31st March 2021.

To be eligible to waive stamp duty up to £500,000, properties must be a primary residential residence, and the completion date must fall before the cut-off.

Property buyers can save as much as £15,000, and will only need to pay tax if they are buying a home over the value of £500k - and then, only on the balance over and above this temporary threshold.

Coronavirus and the associated lockdown have cost many UK people and businesses financially, and this lifting of taxes is aimed to help property buyers to move and help the market recover.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak, who announced this welcome news this week, estimates that as many as nine of ten UK property buyers who purchase in the next nine months will pay zero stamp duty.

Understanding UK Stamp Duty Rates

Since the new threshold came into effect on 8th July 2020, if you are purchasing a property and have not yet completed, you will be eligible. Any homes purchased for less than £500k will be exempt from any stamp duty taxes.

If you buy a property that costs over £500,000, you will still need to pay stamp duty, but at a heavily reduced rate. The tax rate sits at:

  • 5% for values over £500k
  • 10% on values over £925k
  • 12% on values over £1.5 million

As an example, if you purchase a property costing £750,000, you will need to pay £11,250. This would have been £18,750 under the old stamp duty thresholds.

Before the announcement, stamp duty was payable on all properties with a sale value exceeding £125,000. First-time buyers were exempt from stamp duty on property purchases up to a value of £300,000, which has been replaced with this new threshold.

Investors, landlords and buyers of additional residences also receive a tax reduction, although the extra 3% stamp duty payable for second properties remains in place.

How Much Stamp Duty Will You Save?

Purchase value

Previous stamp duty

Stamp duty to 31st March 2021

£100,000

£0

£0

£200,000

£1,500

£0

£500,000

£15,000

£0

£700,000

£25,000

£10,000

£900,000

£35,000

£20,000

£1,100,000

£53,750

£38,750

£1,400,000

£83,750

£68,750


Checkout Our Handy Stamp Duty Calculator

When Will Stamp Duty Rates Revert?

This new threshold is designed to bring a welcome boost to the UK property market and is available for a limited time only.

New property buyers who have not yet completed on their purchase are eligible immediately, and purchases up until 31st March 2021 will be included.

It is highly likely that prospective homebuyers planning to move in the next few months will quickly bring their plans forward to take advantage of this short-term cost saving in purchasing a new property!

Stamp Duty Rates for Existing Property Purchases

With the implementation date for this new rate starting from 8th July 2020, any property purchases that completed before this date will still be eligible for the full stamp duty costs as per the previous rates.

Stamp duty falls payable as soon as the sale completes, which means that for some buyers who have exchanged contracts but have not yet completed, they will be able to take advantage of this discount.

Stamp Duty Savings for Property Buyers

Property purchases over the next nine months will save up to £15,000, with the highest level of savings on purchases at around the new £500,000 stamp duty threshold.

The stamp duty itself is payable on the balance over and above the threshold. Under the previous rates, this meant that if you bought a home costing over the £125,000 limit, you would need to pay 2% tax on the balance of the cost over this level.

With these new rates, the tax works the same way - if you buy a home costing over £500,000, you will need to pay stamp duty only on the balance over the threshold.

Are There Any Stamp Duty Changes for Scotland and Wales?

Scottish and Welsh property taxes work slightly different, and as it stands, these new rates do not have any impact on those markets.

In Scotland, the rates are:

  • 2% on properties between £145,001-£250,000
  • 5% on properties between £250,001-£325,000
  • 10% on properties between £325,001-£750,000
  • 12% on properties above £750,000

There is an additional tax of 4% for landlords in Scotland.

In Wales, the rates are:

  • 3.5% on properties between £180,001-£250,000
  • 5% on properties between £250,001-£400,000
  • 7.5% on properties between £400,001-£750,000
  • 10% on properties between £750,001-£1,500,000
  • 12% on properties above £1,500,000

There is an additional tax of 3% for landlords in Wales.

Stamp Duty and the UK Budget

Stamp duty raises on average £12 billion per annum for the UK government, which accounts for approximately 2% of the revenue collected through taxes each year.

This temporary lift on the stamp duty thresholds will cost around £3.8 billion over the next nine months.

For help understanding how the stamp duty changes impact your property purchase, and what this means for securing a competitive mortgage, give Revolution Brokers a call on 0330 304 3040 or drop us a message at info@revolutionbrokers.co.uk.

Author

Almas Uddin

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The information on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs. Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

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