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SDLT Debate: Calls for Reform Amidst Divided Expert Opinions

November 21, 2023

The Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) debate is heating up, with recent discussions focusing on whether to abolish or reform the tax. Despite changes last September aimed at easing the burden on homebuyers, recent research shows the nation paid £2.9 billion in the past year, raising questions about the effectiveness of these measures.

The National Association of Property Buyers (NAPB) has proposed a five-point plan, urging the next government to reduce stamp duty, enhance tax relief for green landlords, and boost house construction. Concerns about falling house prices drive the urgency.

Emma Bough from Muve suggests alternatives to SDLT, such as removing it altogether or raising the 0% threshold, to incentivise non-first-time buyers and stimulate the housing market.

Peter Ambrose from The Partnership Limited cautions against viewing SDLT as a sole solution, emphasising the need for a comprehensive approach and highlighting the potential psychological boost of an SDLT holiday.

Paul Sams, Head of Property at Dutton Gregory Solicitors, advocates for changes to SDLT, proposing an exemption of up to £600,000 for first-time buyers and revised rates for non-first-time buyers. He emphasises the need for incentives to speed up property transactions.

The SDLT debate reflects the complexities of the property market. As calls for reform and varied expert opinions continue, finding a balanced solution remains challenging for the industry to ensure a thriving and accessible property market.

Information gathered from Today's Conveyancer, see here

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