Martin Tolhurst Banner Image

Knowledge Hub

News and Events

Not all First Time Buyers benefit from the Stamp Duty cuts?!

View profile for Richard Carter
  • Posted
  • Author

Martin Tolhurst Solicitors welcomed the cut to SDLT for First Time Buyers announced by the Chancellor in his budget On Thursday. Residential Property Partner Richard Carter commented:

“The payment of a large upfront payment for SDLT has always deterred some first time buyers in the South East. The Chancellor’s announcement that First Time buyers will not pay SDLT on purchases up to £300,000, and a reduced rate for those buying up to £500,000 is therefore a very welcome boost for First Time buyers. It really removes a major barrier and we think this will help considerably those trying to get on the property ladder in the South East."

Carter warned however:

“Please  beware that not all First time buyers will qualify for the reduction.  If you have ever owned any interest in any property you do not qualify as a first time buyer under the scheme. For example if a couple are buying their first home together for £250,000 but if one of them has owned a property previously (with for example a sibling or a former partner) then they do not qualify for the relief and will pay SDLT at the normal rates I’m afraid. The rules are clear – you do not qualify if you have previously owned any interest in land or property anywhere in the world. In addition First Time Buyers in Scotland, or those buying over £500,000 do not qualify.”

“The news overall is positive. The housing market had been stuttering for the last 3 months in the South East. First Time buyers were sitting on their hands waiting to see what happened next. The Government has done something positive for first time buyers , especially when combined with the massive Help to Buy scheme that is also helping them with their deposits. The amount the Government expects to collect in SDLT as a result of this change will fall by over £600 million  every year over the next 5 years."

To find out more about how these changes may help or benefit your first time property transaction, speak to your conveyancer or our New Business Team on: 01795 416933.