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No plan to extend stamp duty holiday, government confirms

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14/12/2020
The governments said it does not plan to extend the temporary relief offered to house buyers via the stamp duty holiday.

More than 22,000 people signed a petition calling for the stamp duty holiday to be extended for six months after 31 March 2021.

The petition stated: “Extending the stamp duty holiday for an additional six-months will assist many buyers who are looking to move to a property that they will not be able to afford otherwise. This will help to stabilise the housing market.”

As it received over 10,000 signatures, the government was required to respond.

The Treasury said the stamp duty holiday was designed to be a “temporary relief” to stimulate market activity and support jobs that rely on the property market.

“The government does not plan to extend this temporary relief”, it stated.

It added that the pandemic caused uncertainty for buyers and sellers with property transactions down by as much as 50% during the first lockdown

“To stimulate immediate momentum in the property market and to support the jobs of people whose employment relied on custom from the property industry, the government decided to introduce a temporary Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) relief. This relief increased the starting threshold of residential SDLT from £125,000 to £500,000 from the 8 July 2020 until 31 March 2021. Since the relief was introduced, transactions have increased and seasonally adjusted data shows that in October 2020, transactions were 8% higher than October 2019.

“As the relief was to provide an immediate stimulus to the property market, the government does not plan to extend this relief. SDLT is an important source of government revenue, raising several billion pounds each year to help pay for the essential services the government provides,” it said.

The Treasury confirmed it will maintain the stamp duty relief for first-time buyers which increases the starting threshold of residential SDLT to £300,000 for property purchases below £500,000.

Further, the new Help to Buy scheme will be introduced from 1 April 2021. This scheme will run until March 2023.

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