Stamp duty overhaul will boost commercial property market

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17 March 2016

Searchflow 2016Stamp duty for buyers of commercial property is to be overhauled under reforms that cut the charges on most transactions but raise them for properties costing more than £1.05m.

The reforms come into effect today. However, transitional arrangements will be put into place for buyers who have exchanged contracts but not completed deals by midnight on Wednesday, 16 March.

The portion of any transaction worth up to £150,000 will incur no stamp duty under the new system, while the amount from £150,000 to £250,000 will be subject to a 2 per cent tax rate and that above £250,000 to a 5 per cent rate.  This amounts to a 1% increase on the top rate which was at 4%.

The Government claims that 90% of businesses will pay the same or less.

Greg Bryce, managing director of SearchFlow, comments: “Much like we saw with the stamp duty changes for the residential market in 2014, abolishing the slab tax system will help boost a very significant portion of the market.

“All but 10% of the market is set to benefit, with only properties costing more than £1.05m being hit by a stamp duty increase. However, the impact at the top end of the market is likely to be realised also with concern about a slow-down and dampening of regional growth voiced by many.”

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