The Government is considering introducing a new stamp duty surcharge, which is designed to clamp down on overseas wealth being used to buy homes in England.

Ministers have expressed concerns that affluent foreign investors, particularly those buying properties in London, have been driving up house prices for domestic buyers.

Figures from the Land Registry showed that nearly half of all foreign-owned properties in England and Northern Ireland, where stamp duty applies, are in London.

This has resulted in thousands of people fleeing the capital to purchase homes in places like Scotland, Birmingham and Bristol, where their money goes considerably further.

As such, the Government is consulting on introducing a new stamp duty surcharge of 1% to work on top of all existing stamp duty rates in England and Northern Ireland.

If approved, the non-UK resident surcharge will apply to purchases of residential properties made by non-UK resident individuals and certain non-natural persons.

The surcharge will apply to freehold and leasehold purchases of residential properties, including rates applicable to the rental element of leasehold properties.

Mel Stride, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said:

“Some evidence shows that non-UK resident buyers of UK property could be inflating house prices.

“A 1% surcharge could help more people own their own homes in the future.”

We can advise on property taxes.