Landlords can breathe a sigh of relief following the Budget, as the Chancellor resisted introducing any further tax changes on landlords.
It’s something this government has frequently done in recent Budgets, notably including a reduction in the tax relief that they can claim and a three per cent stamp duty surcharge.
The only real notable mention for landlords in Philip Hammond’s Budget referred to the launch of a follow up consultation into encouraging landlords to offer longer-term tenancies. Industry experts are supportive of longer tenancies, especially if they’re combined with attractive tax perks – such as tax relief for those landlords offering such deals.
Despite landlords featuring less than in recent years, there were still several points of note:
Capital Gains Tax – The announced 30-day payment window for capital gains will be deferred until April 2020.
Income tax – The higher rate threshold will rise from £45,000 to £46,350. Personal allowance will also be increased, from £11,500 to £11,850.
Empty homes premium – Local authorities will have the power to increase council tax premiums from 50 to 100 per cent on empty homes.
Long-term tenancies – Following the RLA’s proposal for incentivising long-term lettings, the government have pledged a follow-up consultation.
Rent-a-room relief – In another attempt to encourage long-term tenancies, the government will look to establish how rent-a-room relief is being used.
Rent payments – In what could prove good news for landlords, tenants could be encouraged further to meet rental payments on time. The government want to ensure first-time buyers’ history of paying their rent on time is recognised in credit scores and mortgage applications.
A focus on first-time buyers:
The Chancellor focused on first-time buyers in his speech, abolishing stamp duty up to the value of £300,000.
This aims to help young people who are struggling to get onto the property ladder, and will also apply to homes worth up to £500,000 in wealthier areas such as London. It means they will only face charges on the £200,000 difference.
The government has also promised to do whatever it takes to get more homes built, including cracking down on ‘land-banking’ and underwriting loans to small house builders.