2015 saw a double-whammy of tax changes for landlords and investors in buy-to-let properties. But who gains and who loses from these changes, and why?
Firstly, there was the announcement of a reduction in the tax relief offered to landlords for the interest they pay on their properties. Then there was a new Stamp Duty rate for buy-to-let investors, of 3% above the flat-rate. On the face of it, the biggest loser in both of those situations are landlords and property investors, who stand to pay more for buying their property and more interest for the duration they hold it. According to some reports, this could shave thousands of pounds from the annual income of landlords and investors. According to George Osborne, the biggest beneficiary of the changes should be first-time-buyers, who will compete less with landlords for properties. It is hoped that, with more homes on the open market, prices will come down, especially in areas like London, where the cost of houses is considered prohibitive for many. Practically speaking, it’s the Treasury who will benefit the most, however, with estimates that these changes could bring in between £800Million to £1Billion every year in additional revenue by 2020. There are ways for investors and landlords to sidestep some of these new burdens, however, and we are constantly talking with our landlords about the best ways to minimise these costs without passing them on to their tenants.
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