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Policy change soon? Minister meets buy to let tax campaigners

Housing minister Gavin Barwell has met campaigners to scrap anti-buy to let measures introduced by the Cameron government in the past two years - and won their praise for his handling of the meeting.

Steve Bolton of investment specialists Platinum Property Partners and Chris Cooper are both landlords who have for around a year been campaigning for the scrapping of section 24 of the Finance (No. 2) Act 2015 which they describe as an infringement on buy to let investors’ rights. A hearing to decide whether they can trigger a Judicial Review into the specifics of the clause - which restricts mortgage interest relief for landlords - will be heard next month. 

The meeting involved a discussion between the pair and Barwell, with Hunters estate agent Gary Elliott, a landlord from the Croydon area which Barwell represents as MP, and a Croydon-based developer. 

On their Facebook page, the campaigners praised Barwell for this approach.

“He took notes, listened intently and asked clarifying questions when he felt he needed to. At the end, he summarised well, asked us to rank in order of priority/concern all of the issues that we discussed and then he put his points across well. At times he agreed with us and when he disagreed, he explained his reasoning. He also spoke off the record with views that cannot be shared but left us with the impression that he understood the situation and was ‘unofficially’ supportive of many our points of view” say the pair.

In addition to buy to let tax changes introduced by former chancellor George Osborne, the meeting covered Capital Gains Tax, permitted development rights, space standards, and the specifics of the housing crisis for London apart from that for the rest of the country.

We were in common agreement that the lack of supply of new property is the fundamental cause of the housing crisis and this is a key issue for him to address in his role as Housing Minister. There is a common consensus that the bigger house-builders are going to continue to build at similar levels as in the recent past and no game-changing solution to the crisis will be forthcoming from that sector of the market” the campaigning landlords wrote on Facebook after the meeting.

Coverage of the judicial review proceedings in October will be carried on our sister publication Letting Agent Today.

  • Jon  Tarrey

    Will this never-ending tax saga ever be over?

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    Good luck guys, this unfair punitive tax regime targeted at small UK based landlords only is a complete disgrace.

    The industry 'trade bodies' should have seen this off but failed miserably, so its up to your guys

    Good Luck.

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    still thinking the conservatives are the natural home of the small to mid sized investor..........think not.

    Lost my vote for years to come with this tax.

  • Brit Sixteen Sixty Four

    As home ownership plummets the buy to let changes were the best thing George Osborne did. Lets hope they are kept. Landlords should pay tax and not rewarded for over leveraging huge amounts of borrowed money and pricing out first time buyers.

    The simple compromise is to ban interest only mortgages for buy to let.

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    What a load of rubbish I am a proud decent portfolio landlord offering high quality accommodation to the less fortunate without people doing what I do turning decrepid houses into family homes the housing crisis would be so much worse. We buy houses these sways of first time buyers ( they aren't there ) wouldn't t touch don't comment on things you know nothing about what is wrong with buying tinned up houses and turning them into homes family's can live in just yet again another ill informed jealous comment do you know what the new tax is do you think 300% tax rates are fair ?

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