First-time buyers save £5,000 on Stamp Duty in Budget statement

Published: 17/11/2020 By Ellisons

The Chancellor announced in the recent 2017 Autumn Budget that first-time buyers will pay zero stamp duty on the first £300,000 of any home that costs up to £500,000, with immediate effect.

The requirement to pay stamp duty is triggered when you complete the purchase of a property. If you’ve already exchanged prior to 22 November but not completed, you’ll qualify under the new system. First-time buyers of properties in London up to £500k will now save £5,000 on stamp duty. First-time buyers who are buying properties costing up to £300,000 will have no stamp duty to pay, again saving £5,000. The new stamp duty rates are as follows:

Up to £300,000 purchase price: 0% stamp duty £300,000.01 to £500,000: 5% (on that portion of the purchase price).

The key thing is whether or not you actually qualify as a first-time buyer. There are strict rules around this. If you’ve owned a property previously but have sold and don’t currently own, you’re not going to benefit. You also don’t count as a first-time buyer if you’ve owned a major share of a property in the past, and that property doesn’t have to be a home, it could be land. It also doesn’t have to be in the UK. If you’ve owned any property anywhere in the world, you won’t qualify for the tax relief either. However, you will qualify if you’ve only ever owned commercial property such as a shop, office or other commercial building. If you’re buying together with a partner, family member or friend, you’ll both have to meet these criteria otherwise stamp duty will be payable at normal rates.