Stamp duty should be paid by property vendors and not buyers, the Yorkshire Building Society has stated.
Almost three quarters of first-time buyers now pay stamp duty as a result of property price rises.
As the stamp duty tax is payable on properties worth over £125,000, the vast majority of first-time buyers in London will have to pay stamp duty.
If stamp duty was transferred to sellers, Yorkshire Building Society estimates that first-time buyers in London could on average save as much as £13,171.
With affordability a real issue for many first-time buyers, and with supply still failing to meet demand, by passing the cost of stamp duty onto sellers, buyers will be supported onto the property ladder.
Andrew McPhillips, Chief Economist for the Yorkshire Building Society, said: “In its present form, stamp duty does not suit today’s housing market – it pushes up costs for those looking to buy, exacerbating affordability issues in a market where prices have vastly outpaced wage growth”.
A wave of measures introduced by the government in recent years have been designed to slow buy-to-let activity and help first-time buyers onto the property ladder.
Stamp duty has particularly affected the high-end property market, including Wimbledon. However, the unique desirability of Wimbledon as a place in which to live continues to keep the local market moving.
With Chancellor Philip Hammond due to deliver the Spring Budget on 8th March, it remains to be seen whether the subject of stamp duty will be addressed.
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