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Stamp Duty Mess: agents face three different cliff edges across the UK

Varying decisions across the country means the dreaded stamp duty cliff-edge will hit the market at different times in different UK nations.

The UK government this week agreed to extend the current stamp duty holiday for homes up to £500,000 until June 30, and then have a reduced holiday level of £250,000 until the end of September.

However the Welsh Government has extended its stamp duty holiday until the end of June - but will not offer a tapered return to its previous level as in England.


That means the first £250,000 of the price paid for a residential property in Wales will continue to be free from Welsh stamp duty provided the transaction completes before or on June 30. For transactions completing on or after July 1 the old threshold will apply. 

Meanwhile in Scotland, the holiday for its equivalent of stamp duty will not change its end date at all - so finishes in a cliff edge on March 30. The nil threshold for Scotland’s Land and Buildings Transaction Tax was raised from £145,000 to £250,000 last July, mirroring the move in England and Northern Ireland.

But Scottish Finance Minister Kate Forbes has told the BBC she will "stick to the original plan" and says: "It was intended to support the recovery of the residential property market this financial year. That has been achieved - the nil rate band was already lower in Scotland and yet we've seen record high levels of transactions and house purchases, so it has achieved its purpose.”

Northern Ireland is expected to mirror the England changes announced this week in Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Budget.


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