In a bold move on Wednesday Chancellor George Osborne ended the old “slab” style Stamp Duty system and replaced it with a progressive system that will help more local people become homeowners.
Buying a home is the most expensive purchase most of us will ever make. I believe it is right that this government has reduced the amount it takes from house buyers. One of the biggest issues facing our local communities is the cost of homes, especially for first time buyers. So any help the government can give to make that first house purchase more attainable gets my vote.
This move, I believe, will be an excellent boost to the local housing market that has been implemented in a fair, progressive manner. Stamp duty is now levied via a sliding scale, much like income tax. Homes costing less than 125,000 remain free of stamp duty. For homes above this amount, the extra cost is now taxed, not the whole sum but only on the amount above the threshold. The vast majority of house purchasers in this area will now pay significantly less when they buy a home. It is only those buying homes of almost £1million that will be paying more.
Speaking in the House of Commons yesterday George Osborne said, “Mr Speaker, there has been a debate in this country about taxing houses. The system I introduce today replaces a badly designed system that has distorted our housing market for decades.”
The Labour Party has long been advocating a “mansion tax”, an unpopular idea that would not solve the problem it seeks to address. Taxing assets rather than income or spending, in my view, would be a detrimental move. The Chancellor on the other hand has not only addressed the problem but has circumvented the need to introduce yet another tax and the accompanying bureaucracy.
The Chancellor continued, “It reduces the stamp taxes for 98% of people who pay them in this country. It increases the taxes on the most expensive 2% of homes.”
This is a great example of the Conservative Party once again delivering fair and needed reforms that benefits the people who need them most.
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