Surge in sales as city centre investors rush to beat Stamp Duty hike

BIRMINGHAM city centre property consultancy FleetMilne Property has reported an unprecedented surge in apartment sales in January as investors rush to beat the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) hike on additional properties which comes into effect on April 1.

Apartment sales totalling more than £2m were completed by the Colmore Row based-firm in the first month of the year, representing a huge 800% increase on the January 2015 figure.

According to managing director Ben Evans the introduction of higher rates of SDLT outlined in last year’s Autumn Statement, has mobilised investors. 

“Forming a major part of its armoury in its clamp down on buy-to-let, the Government is controversially gearing up to impose an increase of 3% on each stamp duty band for anyone purchasing a second home,” he said.

“These changes, which come into effect from April, will deal a severe blow to investors – from those looking to build existing portfolios, to anyone looking to secure a decent retirement income through the purchase of a buy-to-let property or second home. 

“Overnight, the SDLT on a £250,000 property purchased for buy-to-let will increase from £2,500 to a massive £10,000, so it is hardly surprising savvy investors have been keen to beat the Chancellor’s tax grab, and this has led to a flurry of sales right at the start of the year. 

“Given how quiet January usually is for concluding deals – and taking into account FleetMilne solely operates in the city centre – £2m of apartment sales really is an exceptional result.”

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