Abolishing stamp duty for downsizing OAPs could free up more family homes

Wed 22 Aug 2018

A call for stamp duty to be abolished for pensioners downsizing to free up much-needed family homes for younger buyers has been welcomed by Leamington estate agency ehB Residential.

It’s proposer, Yorkshire peer Lord Richard Best says such a move would also bring in more tax overall as well as reducing pressure on the NHS and social care if elderly people moved to be closer to other family members.

ehB Residential officer manager Clive Thompson said any move to free up much needed medium and larger homes was to be welcomed. He said that while many downsizers may not actually need the money they’d saved, it could act as a catalyst to move home, or at least not be a disincentive to doing so.

Lord Best, in his statement, called on chancellor Philip Hammond to follow up his announcement in last year’s Autumn Budget that first-time buyers would pay no stamp duty on homes costing less than £300,000, with a similar move for over-65s.

Currently, stamp duty is applied at zero per cent for the first £125,000 of a house purchase, two per cent for the next £125,000 and five per cent for the next £675,000.

But according to Lord Best, who has written a number of reports for ministers on housing an ageing population, abolishing the tax for pensioners would ultimately bring in more funds for the tax-payer.

 “The Treasury gets more money because there is a chain of people who also move and have to pay stamp duty.

 “If you are down-sizing you are probably going to take some cash out of the deal, so you are going to buy somewhere worth less than the place you are selling.”

He added that making it easier for pensioners to move house, often to be nearer their families, may mean fewer problems in their old age caused by accidents resulting from living in homes which were too large, resulting in less pressure on the NHS and social care.

 “What they need to think about is don’t wait for a crisis.  Move now when you can and free up these houses for the next generation.”

"EHB has been excellent in helping us move and. settle in Leamington Spa. In particular, Rachel has been fantastic in responding to any questions and helping us out with all aspects of renting our flat. We both feel that we have been well taken care of by the rentals team over the past 2 years, and would happily recommend EHB to anyone moving to the area"
Mr Curren

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Given the current level of concern around COVID-19, we would like to take this opportunity to reassure all of our clients - sellers, landlords, buyers and tenants - that we have a comprehensive business continuity policy which is enabling our team to work remotely.
We have in place robust systems and processes to maintain our service levels and quality, and will look to support all of our clients as best we can in the circumstances.
We will work with all parties involved to limit any inconvenience although there are Government limitations placed on what can be accomplished, and in that event we would ask for your forbearance where possible.
Your key contacts remain as before and can be contacted as usual either by phone or email.
We are confident that we can and will operate as normal possible, and as such, are here to help you though the next phases of the Coronavirus outbreak.
To conclude, all of the team at EHB Residential wish you and yours all the best through this challenging period – stay safe.
 
Leamington Office 01926 881144 or info@ehbresidential.com
Warwick Office 01926 499540 or warwick@ehbresidential.com
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