Tories plan stamp duty increase for foreign buyers

22 November 2019, 08:28

The Tories would introduce a new stamp duty
The Tories would introduce a new stamp duty. Picture: PA
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

A Conservative majority government would force foreign individuals and companies buying properties in the UK to pay a higher rate of stamp duty.

Under the plans, the Tories would introduce a 'Stamp Duty Land Tax' surcharge levied at 3% which would to companies as well as individuals.

The surcharge will be levied on top of all other stamp duty payable and charged at 3%.

The party estimates the measure will raise up to £120 million a year, which would be used to help tackle homelessness and rough sleeping.

Currently, foreign individuals and companies can buy homes as easily as UK residents.

The Conservatives estimate the move would affect around 70,000 purchases per year.

The party say they would make an exemption for Armed Forces and Crown Services personnel serving overseas for work.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Rishi Sunak said: "The Conservative Party is levelling up opportunities across the country, helping millions of people into homeownership.

"Evidence shows that by adding significant amounts of demand to limited housing supply, purchases by non-residents inflate house prices.

"That is why we are introducing a higher rate of stamp duty for non-UK residents that will help to address this issue and could raise up to £120 million."

He said Britain would "always be open to people coming to live, work, and build a life in this great country," adding: "The steps we are taking will ensure that more people have the opportunity of a great place to live and build a family.

"House-building is already at its highest level for 30 years, with over 240,000 homes delivered last year.

"A vote for the Conservatives will allow us to get on with implementing our ambitious domestic agenda, instead of a Labour government spending 2020 distracted by another two chaotic referendums rather than focusing on people's priorities."