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Homebuyers benefit from stamp duty reforms

More than two thirds of homebuyers stand to benefit from the stamp duty (SDLT) reforms introduced after the 2014 Autumn Statement, according to research by Nationwide.

Since 4 December 2014 SDLT has been charged on the portion of the house price that exceeds a certain rate band threshold. This replaced the old 'slab rate' system in which SDLT was charged on the total value of the property.

Nationwide's analysis of the government's Land Registry data suggests that the reforms will reduce SDLT for 69% of homebuyers. Up to £1 billion could be saved by homebuyers across the UK, with £912 million being saved on purchases in England.

Graham Beale, chief executive of Nationwide, said:

"It's gratifying to see the changes making such a substantial difference to the pockets of homebuyers across the UK.

"With the implementation of the new progressive approach in Scotland just around the corner, buyers across the UK will now only pay for the amount of their property value over each new threshold, a victory for fairness and another encouraging step for all those considering a move on to or further up the housing ladder."

SDLT rates from 4 December 2015

Band Residential Band Non-residential
Up to £125,000 0% Up to £150,000 0%
£125,001 to £250,000 2% £150,001 - £250,000 1%
£250,001 to £925,000 5% £250,001 to £500,000 3%
£925,001 to £1,500,000 10% Over £500,000 4%
Over £1,500,000 12% N/A N/A
Over £500,000 15%* N/A N/A

* The 15% rate applies to certain acquisitions of residential property by 'non-natural' persons. That is a company, a partnership including a company or a collective investment scheme.

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