New data reveals that the Treasury collected a grand total of £8.28billion in Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) last year, bolstered by a three per cent surcharge payable upon purchase of additional properties.
According to reports, the three per cent surcharge, which was introduced in April 2016, failed to deter buy-to-let investors from expanding their property portfolios.
This is evidenced by the fact that one in five of all homes purchased in the last six months were additional properties – bringing in £962m in SDLT for HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).
In the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2016, 62,800 additional properties were sold, up from 56,200 in Q3 and just 30,400 in Q2, according to reports – suggesting that interest in buy-to-let grew steadily throughout the year.
Nick Leeming, chairman of estate agent Jackson-Stops & Staff, said: “The data suggests that buy-to-let investors are not being deterred by the new tax, which is supposed to be dampening demand from this group to the benefit of first-time buyers.
“We will see the true impact of this policy in time, but my fear is that additional costs will be passed on to tenants.”
Meanwhile, Lucian Cook, head of residential research at Savills, said that cash buyers had made “a significant contribution to Stamp Duty receipts”.
He said: “It’s about the appetite for buy-to-let properties with cash buyers. While the number of mortgage investors has come off, it has remained pretty robust for cash buyers”.
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