Budget Paves Way For Fairer Stamp Duty Deal

Landlords can look forward to a fairer deal on stamp duty for bulk purchases of residential properties, thanks to the last Budget.

In a boost for the private rented sector, Chancellor George Osborne announced that stamp duty will be based on the mean value of purchased dwellings, ie dividing the aggregate value by the number of residential properties.

This is great news, as under the current system, stamp duty is based on the aggregate value of the properties leading to a disproportionate level of tax levied on landlords.

It's yet another victory for the NLA, which campaigned vigorously on behalf of landlords who wanted to expand their portfolios in response to rising demand for affordable rented accommodation, yet faced stiff tax penalties.

The measure is expected to dramatically cut tax bills and attract billions of pounds of investment in buy-to-let by large institutional buyers of property and pension funds. The Government hopes that the involvement of bigger players will also increase supply in the private rental sector.

HMRC has also said it will consult on plans to make it easier for property owners to convert properties from commercial to residential use, and on reducing barriers to entry in Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs).

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors believes these reforms could lead to 'a revolution in how rented homes are supplied' by increasing the range and affordability of properties.