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Boris Johnson to consider switching stamp duty from buyers to sellers

The Conservative leadership frontrunner, Boris Johnson, has said it is time to consider switching stamp duty liability from the house buyer to the seller.

Johnson, who has already vowed to order a Treasury review in time for his first Budget if he becomes Prime Minister, last year stated that stamp duty was “absurdly high”, while last month he suggested he would consider scrapping it for homes worth £500,000 or less. 

Earlier this month, Johnson met with the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT), which initially proposed the idea to switch stamp duty from to buyer to the seller, with a view to examining their stamp duty recommendation further, requesting further information which has subsequently been provided.


Phil Hall, AAT head of public policy and public affairs, commented: “AAT is naturally pleased that Boris [Johnson] has agreed to look at our long-standing proposal to switch stamp duty liability from the buyer to the seller.

“This will save the taxpayer £700m a year by rendering first-time buyers relief redundant. It will also protect the £9bn of revenue stamp duty generates as it will still be paid in full, simply by different people.

"It is also much more progressive as it will be paid on the lower priced property being sold rather than the higher priced property being bought.”

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Poll: Would you like to see the stamp duty liability switched from the house buyer to the seller?


  • Tony Egan

    Is it just me or won't this simply encourage the seller to factor in the stamp duty, thereby potentially pushing up property prices. In turn the new inflated price attracting more SDLT. Any thoughts anyone?

    Suzanne Morgan

    I agree. Like with any business or producer , the cost is passed on to the 'customer' and the stamp duty would be in the selling price. The buyer ultimately paying !

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    Yes. Go for it Boris and dont worry about scotland.

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    • 16 July 2019 09:13 AM

    Forget Scotland.
    If it wasn't for the English Scotland would be a basket case.
    Scotland would do well to watch out or the English will cut the apron strings.
    Personally I'd vote to get rid of Scotland and build a wall at the border to stop the Scots coming to England.
    But we are where we are
    Scotland will always need bailing out by the English.
    The English accept this though we would prefer not to.
    Scotland is incapable of managing without the English.
    Independence would mean having to take a substantial proportion of the National Debt which is about £7.5 trillion

    This includes future State Pension liabilities.
    Love to see how Scotland could find lenders to assist such Sovereign debt on trillions.
    The Scottish economy simply cannot support Scotland.


    I am amused by your posts Paul. I happen to agree with much of what you say. This is a post about stamp duty payable by sellers so what do you reckon by this idea?


    I am no fan of the SNP but racist comments like this are fertile recruiting ammunition for them. Many Scots run British companies, pay English taxes and help improve the quality of the gene pool in England. The UK's richest man has made much of his fortune through Scottish based industries.

  • icon

    What I’d like to know is can you factor SD as a cost when working out CGT.
    It reduces the burden on the buyer who has had to save up for 25 yrs for his 10% deposit as we are told all the time. Now they don’t have to cut back on monthly gym memberships, mini breaks paid back monthly on the credit card, monthly lease payments on new cars, shopping on Amazon then moaning that Amazon doesn’t pay enough taxes.
    Of course I own a calculator (me head) and I will just add on the price to the asking. Their Mortgage co will add it in to their monthly payments


    Perfectly summed up in a nut shell.

  • icon

    I am at odds with any of this nonsense, currently it’s the buyer that pays the SDLT but now we have a bare market houses taking forever to sell, the buyer is already factoring in SD by knocking it of sellers asking price, so how can we add it on ?

  • icon

    So I sell up pay SDLT, CGT Estate agents fee, lawyers fees and hey I’ve got a whole quid left guess that must be available for some other tax. It’s pointless selling


    I agree, pointless selling, just keep taking the income.

  • icon

    Wonderful so take away s21, takeaway our 10% wear & tear allowance, increase Insurance Premium tax, make us pay thousands of £s for licensing Schemes that their friends are exempt from, put extra C/tax bands on rooms if you them extra facilities, pay full c/tax on voids or when refurbishing, pay fines / penalties/ Council Court Costs 37.5% plus victims support even though ty are the victim, pay hundreds of £s for all kinds of Certificate requirements for ever, pay for Deposit Schemes to protect the Deposit & nothing left to protect the LL, so why not pay SDLT for buyer, pay Capital Gains tax for yourselves and if any residue left when you snuff it pay Inheritance tax, several lots of VAT along the way, what is the definition of a LL it must tax & dogs body.

  • icon
    • 16 July 2019 15:14 PM

    I think it is a crazy idea.
    It will mean it becomes a tax on mobility.
    Essentially people won't be able to afford to move unless the SDLT is built into the selling price.
    Where there is sufficient equity then it might work.
    But property has price points beyond which is not possible.
    It will put people off selling as many won't be able to afford to do so.
    I hope I am all sold up out of my BTL before any of this nonsense becomes law.
    All those accidental LL LL have even more incentive to sell up now before the new CGT rules kick in and now this stupid SDLT thing.
    The only hope is that Boris will be so busy with BrExit that he won't have time to introduce radical changes in the housing market.
    Let us hope Parliamentary time is all taken up with BrExit stuff!!!
    Gives us time to exit the PRS.

  • icon
    • 17 July 2019 11:33 AM

    @robert brown
    Nobody is suggesting that Scotland doesn't contribute to the overall health of the UK economy.
    But twice now the English have saved Scotland from bankruptcy.

    The Darien Gap Scheme
    The RBS bailout.
    Scotland is incapable of standing on its own two feet.

    The Barnett formula tells you that much.

    Hardly racist.
    Just plain economic fact!


    The Darian Scheme was a very bad deal for Scotland and possibly caused much of the emigration which enriched the wider world and disadvantaged the remaining Scots.

    RBS is/was a global company which happened to have its brass plate in Scotland. This bail out was in the interests of banking world wide and of no direct subsidy to the Scottish people.

    The Barnett formula simply says that every part of the UK should be supported in proportion to its population, which I think is perfectly fair.

    Personally I would have preferred to see the four original nations cease to have any unique identity after the Acts of Union, like we no longer differentiate at the level of Mercia, Anglia, Wessex, Northumbria, Dalriada, Fife etc. which all used to be separate kingdoms. The French have the right approach where formerly independent regions are now simply Departments of France.
    Like them we should have one national government and one national team etc.

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    • 18 July 2019 23:17 PM

    @robert brown
    There is much to be commended with your contentions.
    But in the UK individuals have always been proud of their regional differences but recognise that they all need to combine to provide a United Front.
    I believe regional pride is far more the case than country pride.
    Try telling a Yorkshire man is English.
    To him he is Yorkshire first English second!!!
    The UK is an amalgam of so many different types.
    For all its ills the UK is better together and if that means my taxes subsidises Scotland then that is something I am prepared to facilitate.
    But I would prefer that the UK gets rid of NI.
    A UI is far more desirous that the UK bailing them out to the tune of £10 billion per year.


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