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Home movers back replacing stamp duty with capital gains tax charge

A survey among home movers has revealed support for making first-time buyers fully exempt from stamp duty and replacing the stamp duty tax with a capital gainst charge on sales.

The Anthony Ward Thomas Attitudes to Moving survey asked 2,000 respondents a range of questions about their own experience of moving, as well as their thoughts on the wider market. 

While first time buyers are already exempt on the first £300,000 of a purchase, more than half of respondents, 58%, believe they should be fully exempt, according to the survey.


Additionally, more than a third - 38% of respondents - think stamp duty on property purchases should be replaced by capital gains tax (CGT) on all home sales.

The research also asked movers what they look for in a removal firm.

Almost half, 43% of respondents, followed a recommendation from friends or family, a quarter of respondents were motivated by cost, while 23% made their decision based on the firm’s reputation. 

One in ten respondents said they would never use a removals firm, presumably preferring to move themselves or not move at all. 

The removal firm’s founder Anthony Ward Thomas, said: “First-time buyers are the lifeblood of the housing market and we need plenty of them to keep everything functioning smoothly further up the ladder. 

“However, the cost of moving is in danger of running away from them – it’s not just about finding a deposit and having a big enough salary to get the mortgage you need, there are all the other moving costs, such as stamp duty.

“Replacing a tax on buying – stamp duty – with one on selling – CGT – makes a lot of sense.

“Buyers will already have profited from the increase in value of their home so paying a tax on that, rather than at the point of entry, seems much fairer.”

  • Matt Faizey

    Which would further compund the problem of under-occupancy at the top end.

    CGT would simply freeze the top end of the market instead.

    Aunt Milly, 97yrs young, will sit tight in her five bed detached and fund in home care through equity release instead of choosing to sell.

    This type of scenario already being a large contributor to the lack of supply.

    This isn’t to say stamp duty doesn’t require reform but moving it to CGT is not the fix.

    CGT on sale would however promote multi-generational living as more families simply utilise large houses. This, data shows, is good for life expectancy and health. Aunt Milly will choose to share her home with Daughter + Hubby and kids for whom house prices have become daft and they can’t buy.

    Aunt Milly will gift the property at the appropriate moment avoiding IHT. The kids will later mortgage the property and gift or use the money to/for Aunt Milly to cover her care costs if she ever needs it.

    For removal companies, and the wider house moving market however, this is not so good!

    Every person when young has a desire to buy, often people in later life need to be incentivised to sell

  • adrian black

    If Aunt Milly lived in the USA she would be paying an annual house tax, rather than stamp taxes / possible CGT etc....and this is one of the reasons why the USA has a better functioning housing market, usage taxes are enable greater efficiency than transaction taxes, economics 101

  • adrian black

    and a reminder from previous family member comment !!! .......Aunty Ethel wants to sell her home and move into lateral accommodation as she is having trouble with the stairs. She will use the proceeds of her sale to buy her flat. With tax she will not be able to do this . Capital gains tax on 1st homes is a completely daft policy and will stop the market in it's tracks, reduce supply and increase prices as per other comment. A proportional property tax is much more sensible. Economics 101 - usage taxes are much more efficient than transaction taxes as they stimulate flow and create economic activity - and maybe even maybe helps the government (whichever one) balance their books. .

  • icon

    How about they remove taxation on 1st properties alltogether...as if we're not already taxed up to our necks as it is, not to mention IHT, a ridiculous concept...

  • icon

    Surly the most appropriate and fair method would be to apply SDLT retrospectively only on the difference between bought and sold price of a property


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