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Stamp duty holiday may be extended after positive effect on housing market




The stamp duty holiday may be extended by three months, according to a media report. 


The Times has reported that Chancellor Rishi Sunak, as part of his Budget plans next week, will move the deadline from 31 March to the end of June. He has been urged to push back the deadline after many have been left scrambling to complete their transactions before the current deadline.


The Treasury announced last year, in a bid to fire up the property market, that the stamp duty threshold would be temporarily raised from £125,000 to £500,000 for property sales in England and Northern Ireland. In Scotland and Wales, it was increased to £250,000.

The holiday appears to have had a positive impact on the housing market. The right-leaning think tank the Centre for Policy Studies reports that house sales have increased to their highest level since before the 2007 financial crisis. In the UK, 129,400 transactions went through in December, compared with 87,040 in 2014, according to HM Revenue & Customs provisional figures. Rightmove have reported that the average number of days taken to sell a property fell to 49 in November, compared with 67 in 2019.


The think tank now calls the government to permanently increase the threshold on primary residences to £500,000 or abolish it altogether. Data analyst Jethro Elsden warned scrapping the stamp duty holiday would be a "sledgehammer blow to the housing market". 


A spokesperson for the Treasury has said they cannot speculate on tax ahead of fiscal events.



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