The year ahead looks set to be an eventful one for both the residential and commercial property markets, with the Government targeting residential property investors, alongside a desire to build more houses. First time buyers will also remain a priority for the for the industry and policy makers during 2016.
Stamp duty land tax (SDLT) will continue to grab the headlines this year following the Chancellor’s announcements in the 2015 Autumn Statement that there will be an increase in SDLT rates on acquisitions of second homes and buy-to-let properties taking effect from 1 April 2016.
These changes will impact the investment strategies of many landlords and those considering investing in property – although the government is consulting on some policy details, including whether an exemption for corporates and funds owning more than 15 properties is appropriate – an exemption from the higher rates for those ‘making significant investments’ in residential property is also being considered.
Other property related topics to note in the year ahead include:
- Business rates reform – the findings of a structural review are expected before 2016’s March 16th Budget, in which some commentators expect the Government to announce a reform of business rates.
- The “right to rent” obligations for Landlords and Agents under the Immigration Act 2014 will apply to the whole of England from 1 February 2016.
It is important to seek professional advice regarding how these developments could affect your situation and to talk through how best to structure your plans in the short and medium term.
To make an appointment with one of our property specialists, please call Stone Rowe Brewer on 020 8891 6141 and we’d be delighted to help.