George Osborne announces stamp duty reforms

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The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement announced a major reform of SDLT for residential property transactions. With effect from 4 December, the structure, rates and thresholds are being changed to deliver a more efficient and fairer system. 

The new rates, which apply where purchases are completed on or after 4 December 2014, are set out below.  Each new SDLT rate will only be payable on the portion of the property value which falls within each band (rather than tax being due at one rate on the entire property value). 

 

Transitional rules apply where contracts are exchanged before 4 December but the transaction completes on or after that date.  In that situation, buyers will be able to pay SDLT under the old rules or the new rules, whichever is more beneficial for them.

Key points:

Under the new rules, tax will be charged at a marginal rate on each slice of the consideration for a transaction:

Anyone who exchanged contracts before 4 December (and completes on or after that date) can choose whether to use the old or the new rules simply by entering the appropriate amount of tax on their land transaction return. 

The Government is keen to make it as easy as possible for people to understand the changes.

A simple factsheet setting out the changes is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/stamp-duty-reforms-factsheet

An online stamp duty calculator is available at:
http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/tools/sdlt/land-and-property.htm

Further details are available on our website:
https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/autumn-statement-2014-hm-revenue-and-customs

and on HM Treasury’s website:
https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/autumn-statement-2014

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