Record SDLT take despite fall in property sales

A record £7.7billion was raised from Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) during the first eight months of the 2016/17 tax year.

The news comes despite the fact that the number of homes sold fell year-on-year, with property transactions in November 2016 approximately 7.3 per cent lower than in November 2015, according to data from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Figures suggest that there were 782,000 residential properties sold between April and November this financial year, in comparison with 868,000 sold during the same period studied in the 2015/16 financial year.

Despite the fall in sales, experts suggest that the increased tax take can be attributed to a seven per cent rise in property values coupled with recent changes to SDLT – including a tax rate overhaul introduced in December 2014 and a three per cent SDLT surcharge introduced for additional home purchases in April this year.

Property commentator Henry Pryor said that “more than 40 per cent of all SDLT revenue comes from within the M25”.

He added: “While there has been a direct impact on transactions at the top of the market, there is as yet no evidence to support those who have been calling for the Chancellor to rethink the rates applicable to buyers of the most expensive properties”.

Jonathan Hopper, managing director of Garrington Property Finders, added: “Buy-to-let investors will understandably feel aggrieved at the Stamp Duty surcharge they now face, but their calls for April’s increase to be reversed are likely to fall on deaf ears.”

For more information about MD Consulting’s tax or financial planning services and how we can help you, please contact us.

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