Calls to Extend the Stamp Duty Holiday – Flat Owners Should Act Now

Calls to the Chancellor to extend the stamp duty holiday may not work – but new-build flat owners could benefit if they act now, says leading tax and advisory firm Blick Rothenberg.

Sean Randall a partner at the firm said: ‘Efforts are being made to persuade Mr Sunak to extend the stamp duty holiday which is worth up to £15,000 per property. If this does not work buyers worried about completing on or after 1st April 2021 could take the keys or pay 90% of the price before 1st April 2021 which would then give them the benefit. For many, this will probably be unrealistic, but it might work for some.’

‘For buyers of new-build flats, it may be possible to lock-in the holiday (legitimately) by paying the first instalment of ground rent before 1st April 2021. The Act that introduced the stamp duty holiday already extends the holiday to buyers that substantially perform the sale contract before 1st April 2021. For some (e.g., off-plan flat-buyers) this might be worth considering. Retaining the (up to) £15,000 saving might outweigh the negative cash flow cost of paying the tax before completion.’