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Tories serve up a menu to make stamp duty fairer

The Conservatives say they will offer an option menu to make stamp duty fairer for housebuyers.

One option entails exempting first-time buyers from stamp duty on any house purchase below 250,000. The Conservatives would also like to see a doubling of the duty threshold from 60,000, exempting all houses with sale values below 120,000.

The Conservatives say the Government has taken 3.79bn from stamp duty on residential property since 1997.

The Tories’ stamp duty paper is one of eight consultation papers on taxes to be released over the coming months. Other papers include propositions on inheritance tax, council tax, income tax and National Insurance thresholds.

Shadow Chancellor Oliver Letwin says stamp duty is a “classic Labour stealth tax”. He believes the threshold for stamp duty should be raised to 120,000 due to the inc-rease in house prices over the past three years.

Letwin says: “Stamp duty adds another burden to housebuyers at a time when their budgets are at their most stretched. It is particularly hard on first-time buyers trying to get a foot on the property ladder.”


Lenders urged to be inclusive

Lenders should assess and price risk for non-conforming borrowers rather than exclude them, says a new study of the market.

Julian Gibbs

JO Hambro has attracted yet another top fund manager, Clive Beagles, former manager of Newton higher-income fund.


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