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Stamp Duty holiday announced until March 2021

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Chancellor Rishi Sunak has today announced a temporary change to Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) which will now not be payable on properties sold for under £500,000.  The amendment forms part of the latest support from the Government in response to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and will apply with immediate effect, lasting until 31st March 2021.  Sarah Brooks, Partner and Head of our Residential Conveyancing department, explains more about the change to SDLT and what this could mean for the future of the property market.

The change to Stamp Duty

Up until the Chancellor’s announcement in the House of Commons today, SDLT was payable on all properties sold for £125,000 or more.  First time buyers were not required to pay SDLT on properties sold for up to £300,000.  If the property is sold for over £300,000, they paid 5% on any portion between £300,000 and £500,000.

In England and Wales, the rate for payment of SDLT has been as follows:

  • 2% payable on properties sold between £125,001 - £250,000
  • 5% payable on properties sold between £250,001 - £925,000
  • 10% on properties sold between £925,001 - £1.5million
  • 12% on properties sold for above £1.5million.

Under the new rates announced today, no SDLT will be payable for properties sold under £500,000.  Anything above that figure, the following rates will apply for first time buyers as well as those who have owned property before:

  • 5% on properties sold between £500,001 - £925,000
  • 10% on properties sold between £925,001 - £1.5million
  • 12% on properties sold for above £1.5million.

Stamp Duty payable on additional properties

For those who are buying additional property on top of their main residence, the 3% surcharge will also change as follows from today until 31st March 2021:

  • 3% on properties up to £500,000
  • 8% on properties between £500,001 - £925,000
  • 13% on properties between £925,001 - £1.5million
  • 15% on properties above £1.5million

“This is obviously a significant change to SDLT, and will be a boost for the property market in light of the job cuts and other financial struggles people have endured in light of the coronavirus pandemic,” explains Sarah.  “Those who have been considering moving home may now feel encouraged to do so in the coming months to take advantage of the SDLT holiday.  Nearly 90% of those looking to move will now not be required to pay SDLT, saving potentially thousands of pounds. 

“The fact that the change comes with immediate effect is reassuring; an announcement of this nature but a delay to the implementation could have seen the market stall completely while people waited for the change to take place.  We are yet to hear the finer details regarding landlords and buy-to-let properties, as well as the implications for commercial properties; however this is a step in the right direction.”

If you are currently using our Conveyancing department for your move and have questions as to how this will impact you, we will be in touch in due course with further detail as and when we receive it.  Alternatively, for more information as to how we can assist you with buying or selling your home, you can contact our teams today on the following details:

Fareham: 01329 288121
Southampton: 023 8063 9311
Portsmouth:  023 9275 3575
Chandler’s Ford: 023 8071 7467
Waterlooville: 023 9277 6569


This is for information purposes only and is no substitute for, and should not be interpreted as, legal advice.  All content was correct at the time of publishing and we cannot be held responsible for any changes that may invalidate this article.