Knight Frank chairman Alistair Elliott has today added his voice to the growing industry backlash against last year’s introduction of an extra three percent buy-to-let Stamp Duty levy.
Elliott (pictured, left) this morning told City AM that “increasing tax doesn’t increase housing supply” and called for the recent second homes levy to be reversed during the next budget.
Knight Frank also claims that the Stamp Duty change has had a bigger effect on the property market than the Brexit vote, particularly in central London. In Chelsea, it says, the number of house sales has dropped by 10% year-on-year.
Government figures show that after the Stamp Duty was introduced in April the number of buy-to-let properties purchased dropped off by a fifth, and buy-to-let lending dropped by 65% over the same period, according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders.
Elliott is not the only high-profile person to be tackling the government on this issue. Last week Cherie Blair led a failed attempt in the high court by a landlord action alliance called Axe the Tenant Tax Group to reverse the government’s planned reduction in tax allowances for landlords, due to come into force next year.
And the property industry is not alone in its campaign to reverse the tax. Last week The Conveyancing Association said it had witnessed “considerable falls in buy-to-let purchases” and that the first-time buyer ‘bounce’ that the new tax was designed to introduce “has not materialised” said Eddie Goldsmith, the association’s chairman.