The Treasury has so far pocketed around £2bn as a result of the 3% stamp duty surcharge on additional homes, including buy-to-let properties, new analysis by accounting firm Blick Rothenberg shows.
The latest statistics released by HMRC to 31 July 2017 reveal that the number of property transactions is now 1,204,730, which is broadly the same as the year to 31 July 2015, but the increased rate of tax on additional homes means that SDLT receipts have increased by 20% in the same period, equivalent to an extra £2bn in tax.
Originally officials had estimated it would make half as much from the policy in the four years between 2016 and 2020.
Under the policy, which was introduced in April last year, anyone buying a second home or buy-to-let property must pay an extra 3% stamp duty on top of ordinary property purchase levy.
Robert Pullen, director at Blick Rothenberg, said: “Some of this increase could relate to general property price increases, but it is likely that the majority relates to the changes from 1 April 2016, which added an additional 3% SDLT for purchases of additional residential properties.
“The policy intention was always stated to be to realign the residential property market to make it fairer for first time buyers. It is becoming clearer, however, that as prices continue to rise the measure has succeeded only in generating extra tax for HMRC as well as a sluggish property market evidenced by the number of property transactions falling.”
“The government will need to urgently consider whether the additional 3% SDLT policy is helping achieve fairness in the property market, or if it is creating more problems than it is solving,” he added.