Local agent slams ‘damp squib’ Budget
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A St Albans estate agent has criticised yesterday’s Budget for failing to shift stamp duty thresholds for UK buyers.
Nick Doyle, senior property consultant at Cassidy & Tate, said: 'The Budget was a damp squib in terms of anticipated reductions in stamp duty.
'Increasing by 2 per cent to non-UK property buyers is quite elitist as overseas buyers tend to purchase in prime central London.'
Chancellor Rishi Sunak yesterday announced a 2 per cent stamp duty surcharge for non-UK residents buying property in England and Northern Ireland from April 2021.
This will be in addition to regular stamp duty rates, which remain unchanged at 0 per cent for properties costing less than £125,000 up to 12 per cent for £1.5 million-plus homes. First-time buyers pay no stamp duty on homes costing £300,000 or less.
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Nick said that Cassidy & Tate had been holding off on launching several properties in the £1.5-£1.8 million price range until after the Budget was announced, adding that potential buyers had also been waiting to see if any cuts would be introduced.
A 'continued commitment' by the government to invest in infrastructure 'to unlock housing development and build more new homes to satisfy demand' was encouraging, he said.
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He also welcomed the Bank of England's announcement yesterday that it was cutting interest rates by 0.5 per cent and putting borrowing 'back down to previous historic low levels'.