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Knight Frank chair urges govt to U-turn on Stamp Duty for second homes

  • 10/10/2016
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Knight Frank chair urges govt to U-turn on Stamp Duty for second homes
The government has been called on to reverse the 3% Stamp Duty tax on second purchases by Knight Frank’s group chairman, Alistair Elliott, who pointed out that increasing tax "does not increase supply".

Elliott, who is also a senior partner at the firm, told City AM that the firm is “anxious” for Theresa May’s government to confirm its intentions for the tax changes which came into force on 1 April.

Former chancellor George Osborne, announced during his Autumn Statement last year that buyers of second properties would be subject to a 3% Stamp Duty premium, in a supposed bid to promote and boost UK homeownership.

The changes prompted a race among buy-to-let investors ahead of the April deadline to complete purchases and avoid the extra tax.

According to Property Partner figures released in June, listed rental properties dropped by 15% in the month following the tax changes, with a fall recorded in 91% of the towns and cities analysed.

Elliott explained that with prime central London being significantly hit by the taxes, Knight Frank would be required to establish more of a presence in regions that generated greater business volumes.

He welcomed an inquiry launched by London mayor Sadiq Khan into overseas investment into the London housing market, but added that he hoped foreign homeownership would “stay with us for the future”.

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