Non-UK residents are now required to pay a 2% Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) surcharge, but demand in Central London is unlikely to dampen.
UK resident companies that are controlled by non-UK residents may be required to pay, and the surcharge applies to freehold and leasehold purchases and on rents on the grant of a new lease.
The implementation will also see buyers who intend to live in the property required to pay the surcharge.
Under the new guidelines, individual buyers can have the surcharge refunded if they are in the UK for at least 183 days during any continuous 365-day period within two years referenced by the date of transaction.
Harry Buchanan said: “Despite the introduction of the additional stamp duty surcharge for foreign buyers today, we expect prime central London to remain an extremely attractive prospect for international buyers.
“In fact, we anticipate many more overseas buyers will return to the market once international travel restrictions are lifted.
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“We therefore expect demand to remain strong going forward, especially as the UK continues to roll out one of the world’s fastest vaccination programmes, which will boost economic activity in the coming months.
“We are already starting to see pent up demand from overseas buyers starting to build. Over the past two months, numbers of buyers visiting our website from the UAE have increased by 31%, while website searches from Hong Kong have gone up 33%.
“In particular, more buyers from Hong Kong are getting in touch following the UK’s offer of an easier path to citizenship for Hongkongers with British National (Overseas) passports.
“These buyers are specifically looking to become owner occupiers, and are particularly keen to be close to good schooling.
“The increasing demand we are seeing gives us a strong indication that interest in prime central London will continue to be high, especially for turn key properties that can double up as a lock and leave which we know tend to be most sought after by foreign buyers, as well as properties close to transport hubs.”
By Jake Carter
Source: Mortgage Introducer
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