London agencies have voiced concerns about the Chancellor’s failure to announce any alterations to Stamp Duty in his Autumn Statement.
WA Ellis and Black Brick both expressed dismay at Philip Hammond’s speech in the House of Commons where he announced a range of measures affecting the property market including investment in new housing and the banning of letting agency fees for tenants.
But there was no hint of a reversal on the Stamp Duty increases of his predecessor George Osborne made in April 2016.
Black Brick managing partner Carmilla Dell said: “Some are disappointed the Chancellor didn’t offer any relief on Stamp Duty, which rose steeply under George Osborne and has, without doubt, depressed activity on the higher end of the housing market.
“We always felt, however, that such a move was unlikely, given the pressure on public finances.”
She praised Mr Hammond for his announcement to invest £3.7billion to address the UK’s housing shortage but said it wouldn’t affect the prime market they cover.
She said: “Overall, we are pleased that we have a Chancellor who appears to favour continuity over continual innovation and we are glad that he has also decided to end the recent tradition in the UK of essentially presenting two budgets each year.”
Meanwhile WA Ellis, part of the JLL Group, said Mr Hammond had “dashed the hopes” of many in the prime central London market by leaving Stamp Duty tariffs unaltered.
Director Richard Barber said: “Despite concerted lobbying from agents and The Daily Telegraph, neither Stamp Duty nor the draconian measures imposed on landlords were mentioned.”
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