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Rightmove calls for regional Stamp Duty thresholds

Rightmove has joined growing calls for Stamp Duty reform ahead of the Spring Budget next week.

The property portal has outlined three reforms it would like to see Chancellor Jeremy Hunt adopt, including considering regional variations in Stamo Duty tax, a mortgage scheme and green incentives for landlords.

Rightmove has suggested a “localised approach” to Stamp Duty charges in line with regional property prices.


It said this could support more first-time buyers in getting a foot on the ladder, but also potentially encourage more movement up and down the ladder.

The property website highlights that Only 4% of homes in London are Stamp Duty exempt for all buyers, compared with 71% in the North East

Meanwhile, 28% of London properties are currently exempt from stamp duty for first-time buyers, compared with 91% in the North East

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s property expert, said: “Stamp Duty is a big barrier to moving, with some who would potentially consider a move likely put off by the hefty stamp duty tax in addition to other moving costs. At the very least the government should be thinking about making the current changes to first-time buyer stamp duty charges permanent, with the higher thresholds introduced in 2022 due to expire next year. 

“However, we think there is an opportunity to go a step further. With such regional variations in property prices, increasing Stamp Duty thresholds in line with these regional variations would seem a logical first step for stamp duty reform. Whilst longer-term supply measures are also needed, this could be one way to help first-time buyers trying to get onto the ladder in more expensive parts of England.”


Percentage of available properties for sale exempt from stamp duty for all buyers

Percentage of available properties for sale exempt from stamp duty for first-time buyers

East Midlands



East of England






North East



North West



South East



South West



West Midlands



Yorkshire and The Humber



Rightmove has also suggested that while rumours of a 99% mortgage scheme could help buyers, more support is needed on affordability criteria.

Matt Smith, Rightmove’s mortgage expert said: “The proposal for a 99% mortgage product will offer further support for those with smaller deposits, but it doesn’t address the issue of being able to pass an affordability stress test at 8%+ whilst also being inside the 4.5 loan to income ratio.

“Whilst we support new solutions to help more first-time buyers, the 99% LTV mortgage alone is only likely to support a relatively small group. More needs to be done to strike the right balance between supporting a bigger group of future first-time buyers, whilst maintaining robust affordability assessments.”

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    Tim Bannister is right. This tax is a huge barrier to moving. Estate Agents don't pay this tax, buyers do. Estate agents just moan about the market. But regional changes to stamp duty will make this scheme even more confusing. No wonder the UK is in a recession. The housing market one of the biggest drivers of the UK economy is in the doldrums, mainly in my opinion due to the outrageous increases brought in by a Conservative Chancellor George Osbourne.

    It needs a major reform. HIGH TAXES = RECESSION. LOW TAXES = GROWTH
    The Gov't is obviously blind to the many spin offs from a healthy housing market.
    I met Boris Johnson in Uxbridge and i like to think it was my conversation and my two page report on the benefits low stamp duty, that resulted in the stamp duty holiday. But this caused a boom, stamp duty holidays are not needed, this TAX ON HOMES needs to be fundamentally reformed once and for all. IE much lower across the board. More house moves and all the spin offs, including pushing the UK out of recession will return the money to the Gov's coffers.


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