Stamp Duty Land Tax Relief for First Time Buyers

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In today’s budget the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, announced Stamp Duty Land Tax Relief for First Time Buyers to start today 22nd November 2017.

The relief is available on all properties up to £500,000 purchase price where all buyers are ‘First Time Buyers’.

We have already had a number of queries from our clients about this new initiative so we list some frequently asked questions here:

How much will I save in Stamp Duty Land Tax?

You can save up to £5,000. This based on the tax between £125,000 and £250,000 being payable at 2% = £2,500, and the tax from £250,000 to £300,000 being payable at 5%, also £2,500.

Total potentially saved = £5,000

Average saving will be £1,654 given the average first time buyer purchase price.

Anyone paying over £500,000 for a property, even if a First Time Buyer will not make a saving.

Am I too late?

If you have already completed your purchase, yes you are.

The relief applies to deals completed on or after 22nd November.

If you have exchanged contracts but not yet completed you can still benefit.

Am I a First Time Buyer?

The guidance notes say that a First Time Buyer is someone who has ‘not, either alone, or with others,  previously acquired a major interest in a dwelling or an equivalent interest in land situated anywhere in the world’

What if only one of us is a First Time Buyer?

All purchasers have to be First Time Buyers under the definition for any benefit.

Can I get the relief using the Help to Buy scheme?

Yes, affordable housing schemes are covered under the stamp duty land tax relief initiative.

I have already completed my purchase, can I claim back my stamp duty land tax?

No, the relief is not retrospective, even if you were unfortunate enough to complete as a First Time Buyer at £300,000 on 21st November.

What if our builder has offered to pay our stamp duty land tax?

Good news for the Builder. Not so useful for you. Although it may give you room to go back in and negotiate those floorings or decorations you had your eye on!

Further Information

Autumn 2017 Budget Notes
HMRC SDLT Relief Guidance Notes
SDLT Calculator

Our notes are for guidance purposes only and we cannot comment on your personal situation with regard to stamp duty land tax – for specific queries please contact your Solicitor

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