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Stamp Out The Duty - new campaign launched by newspaper

A national newspaper is today launching a campaign for the stamp duty holiday to be extended.

The Daily Telegraph says its campaign - called Stamp Out The Duty - is inspired because it fears hundreds of thousands of buyers risk losing out on the current holiday as transactions slow because of the lockdown.

It says it wants to help buyers about to be “caught out” by a transaction process that now takes an average of 20 weeks compared with just 12 weeks a year ago.


The Telegraph - which is considered a strong influence on the current government, and where Prime Minister Boris Johnson used to work - is “calling on the Treasury to avoid penalising thousands of homebuyers at a time when mortgage lenders are already demanding vast deposits and household finances have been battered by the pandemic.”

Indeed the newspaper suggests Chancellor Rishi Sunak should consider scrapping SDLT on homes completely. In an editorial highlighting the campaign it says: “The stamp duty holiday announced by the Chancellor in July has been a remarkable showcase of the power of tax cuts to stimulate economic activity.”

The Telegraph warns some 325,000 buyers are mired in delays created or exacerbated by the Coronavirus crisis.

TV property commentator Phil Spencer, Zoopla, Hunters and the Conveyancers’ Association are all quoted in the campaign launch article, now available on the Telegraph website.

Separately, mortgage broker Enness Global says this morning that a survey of 1,000 current buyers shows 48 per cent are worried that their sale won’t complete before March 31, and 67 per cent would like to see the deadline extended.

The broker says those buyers yet to complete due to Coronavirus delays may be panicking, having had an offer accepted well in advance of the deadline.

It adds: “Perhaps a fair alternative to an extension would be to allow those who have an offer formally accepted prior to the end of March to also qualify for stamp duty relief.”

An online petition calling for an extension - first put online in October - is continuing to draw significant numbers of signatures.

It’s now approaching 73,000 - if it gets to 100,000 the government will be obliged to consider holding a debate on the subject.

Poll: Should the government...


  • Steven Heath

    Stamp Duty could be paid by the seller , not the buyer it would certainly help first time buyers . Why not have a fixed term mortgage say 3% over 25 years , they used to have these in 1960's . On leasehold flats why not introduce a law automatically extending all leases 999 years with a zero peppercorn ground rent with no cost to the leaseholder . We all should fully own our Home not have to increase a lease for an exorbitant price every 30 years .

    Daniel Hamilton-Charlton

    Stamp Duty paid by vendor I'm not so sure about, but Searches for sure.

  • Richard Rawlings

    Why not have SDLT paid by the seller? For the following reasons:
    1. The seller has usually made a considerable capital gain, which is otherwise tax free.
    2. The seller is more likely to be able to afford it than the buyer.
    3. The buyer would have a higher deposit and therefore qualify for better mortgage deals and have a greater choice of homes to buy, or:
    4. The buyer would require a smaller mortgage, making home ownership slightly more affordable.
    What's the downside? (Apart from the fact that the seller would have higher apparent costs, which might put pressure on agency fees, unless deflected well by the agent).
    No matter who pays the SDLT, it all comes out of the same pot eventually! But it would seem more equitable for this to come from the seller.

    Kristjan Byfield

    Would disagree with downward pressure created on agent fees Richard- unless they are moving in to a tenant or hippy commune after selling they will buy something and save SDLT there- I would hazard a guess that more transaction are 'up' the property ladder rather than down (so the SDLT on the sale would typically be lower than on the property they buy too)- if an agent cant explain that and convey savings maybe they deserve their fee to go down? (joking- not joking)

  • Kristjan Byfield

    Who are the 33% of buyers who DONT want it extended? That's the real story here surely! There's also the 19% that aren't worried about meeting the deadline but would like to see it extended- for the benefit of others I assume. Would love to see a journalist probe those questions- purely out of damned curiosity.

    Daniel Hamilton-Charlton

    probably the ones that want their businesses to be supported financially by the government and know that money does not grow on trees. The pandemic has been expensive and the coffers must be getting low,. Tax has to be raised from somewhere to pay for the massive debts, so SDLT has to start again as it makes a decent contribution to the public purse.....I would imagine.

  • Andrew Stanton PROPTECH-PR A Consultancy for Proptech Founders

    Richard - if vendor pays the stamp - it just increases the sale price to buyer, surely. And if vendors are exiting the market, they would be penalised, as no upward chain vendor is 'paying' the stamp element as they are not buying on.

    Also, if I sell at 1.5M and buy at 200k, so under a scheme where I pay my buyer's stamp I gift them £93,750 - or lose this out of my sale equity, and the kind vendor I buy from chips me £1,500 - so I am £92,250 down on the deal - solution increase my selling price by £92,250 creating house price inflation - or I decide not to move - moribund market .


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