As is always the case, the guessing games have begun ahead of Mr Osborne’s latest budget announcement later today.
But rather than second guess what may come up, property expert and eMoov CEO, Russell Quirk, has highlighted his ‘wish list’ of how Mr Osborne should tackle the UK’s housing issues.
They read as follows: –
Capital Gains Tax
For Mr Osborne to reduce Capital Gains Tax from 18% to 15%
Reform stamp duty
Stamp duty should be paid as a flat tax by the seller in order to take the government’s foot off of the throat of the housing market.
Increase the threshold for entrepreneurs’ tax relief to £15m
Utilise Empty Council Land
Force (not just incentivise) councils to turn over unutilised land for housing. They currently possess 180,000 public assets that are sat empty and going to waste. We suggested this a year ago and in that time registration for London new builds has dropped 9%. I oversaw reallocation of land at Brentwood Council and put several acres of derelict land assets into housing use of all tenures so it CAN be done.
Allow tax relief for private investors in social housing schemes in order to incentivise them to actually build and address the shortage.
Only 3% of buyers actually benefit from the scheme. It doesn’t fix the problem of supply and, ironically, fuels further price growth.
We shall see today if George Osborne decides to face up to Britain’s housing crisis, or if he continues to bury his head in the sand of Help to Buy and stamp duty.