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Lib Dems put mansion tax at heart of manifestoThe Liberal Democrats have set out details of their version of the mansion tax - and presumably what they may want introduced if they are in a coalition with Labour or Conservatives after the May 7 general election.

Like Labour the Lib Dems' mansion tax would be on homes valued at above £2m (0.5 per cent of homes, around 70,000 in total the party claims). But - also like Labour - there appears no firm commitment in the party manifesto to explaining how such properties will be valued should the tax be implemented.

The threshold would rise in line with house prices, so a property worth £1.9 million now will not incur the Levy in the future if its value rises in line with the average explains the Liberal Democrat manifesto.

The document then goes on to say: We will set bands for properties worth over £2 million, with a fixed charge for properties in each band - just like the way council tax works. We will ensure that those in the lowest bands pay a much smaller charge then those in the top-value properties.

We will set the bands and charges so that we raise £1 billion when the Levy is introduced in 2017/18. We will then raise these bands each year in line with house price inflation.

The party claims the mansion tax will raise £1 billon a year with revenue being used to pay down the deficit.

The manifesto also reaffirms Liberal Democrat commitments to ensure 300,000 homes a year are built - without saying how this would be achieved, especially as they would all be to a zero carbon standard. Some of the new homes would be in south of England garden cities.

The party will also create a Rent To Own programme, where young people will be able to buy their own home without needing a deposit. Rent to Own will see first-time buyers steadily build up a share in their home through monthly payments equivalent to rent until they own the property outright after 30 years, just like a normal mortgage.

Comments

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    If it was divided into the "I have to pay it and I'm against it" and the "I don't have to pay it, I'm in favour" camps, like you say, then the in favour camp would win by a country mile. This mansion tax won't affect a lot of people - it will only hit those with the broadest shoulders hardest.

    I think if you asked much of the electorate if they agreed with the very rich paying a little more to help fund the poorest, they would be behind it. Problem is, you get scare stories from high-end agents and wealthy celebs like Myleene Klass saying little grannies would suffer if this unfair tax was introduced. People get swayed.

    • 16 April 2015 16:40 PM
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    The arguments for and against are well worn now. Im bored of it as it is one policy that polarises people more than many into the I have to pay it and Im against it and the I dont have to pay it, Im in favour camps.

    If only people voted on what was best for the country rather than their own bank balance.

    • 16 April 2015 16:24 PM
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    Whether you agree with the idea of a mansion tax or not, surely a banded system on all taxed properties makes more sense than Labour's blanket tax of anything over 2m

    • 16 April 2015 10:46 AM
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