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North South housing divide may be closing

The latest survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors shows the first signs the North-South gap in house prices may be starting to close.

Over the last month there has been a sharp upturn in the property market in the North West and Yorkshire & Humberside, with further strengthening in the Midlands and Wales. Even the North East has seen modest price gains since the start of the year.

Some 73 per cent of RICS members reported rising house prices in February, with just 4 per cent witnessing falls. The net balance of 69 per cent is the highest RICS has seen since the last housing boom a decade ago.


CML rejects consumer over-spend claims

Mortgage providers have dismissed industry watchdog concerns that homebuyers are overstretching themselves by borrowing too much.The Council of Mortgage Lenders says the latest figures on mortgages showed homebuyers had not increased the amount they borrowed compared to the value of their house.The CML said in February the average first time buyer borrowed 78 per cent […]

Charitible Giving

In the pre-Budget report on 9 November 1999 the Chancellor announced a package of tax incentives aimed at modernising and simplifying the tax system to boost giving to charity. The Getting Britain Giving package included: abolishing the £250 minimum limit for Gift Aid donations; allowing donors to join the Gift Aid scheme by telephone or […]

Increase in PAYE Limits

With effect from 6 April 2000, employers can pay Pay As You Earn (PAYE) and National Insurance Contributions (NIC) to the Inland Revenue quarterly rather than monthly where the average monthly payments to the Inland Revenue are less than £1,500. This limit was previously £1,000. Certain inclusions and deductions need to be made in determining […]

Quicker rewards from enterprise

Venture capital trusts and enterprise investment schemes have been given a boost in a bid to make them more attractive to investors by cutting the minimum holding period.Tax reliefs available via VCTs and EISs are on condition that the investor remains the beneficial owner of the shares for five years.But the minimum holding period to […]


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