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Home buyers benefit from stamp duty changes

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The average home buyer is £4,500 better-off after the stamp duty changes that were introduced on 4 December 2014.

According to Halifax, a person buying a property paid a total of £3,676 in stamp duty tax, based on the current average house price in England and Wales of £273,531.

Under the previous tax structure, a buyer would have paid a total of £8,205 in stamp duty payments.

Purchases of homes above £925,000 in the first 6 months of 2015 were 10% lower than in the first half of 2014.

Sales above £1.5 million have also seen a bigger impact with a 20% decline. Total stamp duty revenues rose by 16% between 2013/14 and 2014/15 to a new record high of £7.5 billion.

London contributed 40% of all stamp duty revenues in 2014/15, compared with 13% of all property transactions.

Craig McKinlay, mortgages director at Halifax, said:

“The changes made to stamp duty a year ago have been of significant benefit to many buyers. Only those purchasing the most expensive homes are worse off.

“The failure to index the start point for stamp duty in line with house price inflation has dragged more buyers into the tax net in recent years.”

Further stamp duty changes

New rates of stamp duty that are 3% higher than the current bands will be introduced from 1 April 2016 on purchases of additional properties such as buy-to-lets and second homes.  Mobile homes, caravans, houseboats and properties sold for less than £40,000 are exempt from the new rates.

No changes have been announced to land and buildings transaction tax in Scotland.

Speak to us about how stamp duty could affect you.