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Stamp duty receipts fall as transactions decline – HMRC

  • 01/10/2019
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Stamp duty receipts fall as transactions decline – HMRC
Residential Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) has taken a 10 per cent hit as property transactions decreased by 70,000 to 1.03bn from 2018 to 2019.


HMRC’s Annual Stamp Taxes Statistics also showed that residential SDLT revenue decreased to £8.37bn, attributed to first-time buyers’ relief, devolution of SDLT to Wales and a fall in transactions for properties worth over £1m, which dropped eight per cent since last year. 

Over the year there was a £715m or six per cent decrease in SDLT receipts in England to £1.18bn while Northern Ireland saw a £5m or six per cent decrease to £80m.

On a regional basis London accounted for the most SDLT revenue, amounting to £4.46bn or 38 per cent of total SDLT receipts.

Residential properties where the value was less than £250,000 accounted for nine per cent of residential property receipts and 58 per cent of residential transactions.

There were 231,000 additional dwellings transactions in 2018-19, a decrease of nine per cent from 2017-18. However, if devolution of SDLT to Wales is to be taken into account, the decrease sits at three per cent.

Additional dwellings transactions accounted for 22 per cent of all residential transactions.

Some 218,900 transactions benefited from first time buyers’ relief (FTBR) in 2018-19. The total amount of SDLT relieved due to FTBR in 2018-19 was estimated at £521m while London and the South East accounted for 49 per cent of that, worth £256m.

Some 19 per cent of all FTBR transactions were in the South East while London and the East of England both accounted for 13 per cent.


The weak link

Andrew Southern, chairman of property developer Southern Grove, said: “Stamp duty is the weak link that will continue to bind the market’s progress and only last month was blamed for a monumental retreat in the number of cash buyers.

“A healthy nine per cent rise in receipts in England a year ago has been replaced by a six per cent decline and, while you can be sure no one will shed a tear for the chancellor, it is what this means for ordinary people that matters.

“They want to move, feel they have the capital to move but can’t get their head around the absolutely vicious sting in the tail that means someone purchasing a £500,000 home pays £15,000 just for the privilege of doing so.”

Laura Suter, personal finance analyst at investment platform AJ Bell, added: “The stamp duty surcharge for those buying an additional property has clearly put people off buying, with some landlords choosing to leave the market altogether.

“Boris Johnson and new chancellor Sajid Javid have already set their sights on reforming stamp duty to shake-up the property market, with Boris pledging to scrap it on all homes worth £500,000 or less during his prime minister campaign.

“Whether this gets lost in the Brexit quagmire remains to be seen, but the falling tax take and sluggish property market could propel it up the government’s agenda.”

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