The UK government should double the stamp duty surcharge overseas buyers must pay when purchasing a property in England, an industry lobby group has said.
The National Association of Property Buyers (NAPB) said doubling the stamp duty surcharge would “level the playing field” amid an influx of “wealthy foreign buyers”.
Under current rules, overseas buyers must pay an extra two per cent surcharge for a house they are going to live in, and an extra five per cent for any property that will not be their main home.
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However, the lobby group urged the government to double the two per cent surcharge, in arguing foreign buyers from “high income and low tax locations” are pushing up UK property prices.
The group added that the “collapse in sterling” after Liz Truss’ mini-budget created a “huge discount” for overseas buyers as it warned an increase in the surcharge is needed to fix housing “inequalities”.
Jonathan Rolande, a spokesperson for the NAPB said: “Foreign ownership is reducing available stock in the sales and rental sector and pushing up prices”.
He noted that hiking the surcharge would also “bring in additional funds for the treasury” as he said the UK government needs to “think bigger” in their approach to the housing market.
The calls come as figures show almost 250,000 UK properties worth a combined sum of £90.7bn are currently owned by overseas nationals.
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London continues to be the top destination for foreign buyers, with 85,451 properties in the UK’s capital owned by those from overseas.
Inside London, Westminster remains the top destination for overseas buyers, with £1.8bn worth of homes owned by foreign owners, while Kensington & Chelsea took second place with £10.7bn.
By Louis Goss
Source: CITY A.M.