Scrap stamp duty on houses under £500k says Conservative MPS

A group of Conservative MPs called the Free Enterprise Group are calling on the government to alter the stamp duty property tax thresholds so that it is only payable on houses worth more and £500,000.

The overhaul of the stamp duty tax system was just one of a number of tax measures proposed by the group, including an increase of the threshold for higher-rate tax to £50,000. Stamp duty has recently been criticised as undermining the Help to Buy Mortgage scheme, as the property tax requires a large sum of cash from buyers while the government scheme is designed to reduce the deposit requirement.

Stamp duty is currently payable on any property over £125,001 and starts at 1 per cent of the house price. The percentage amount increases to 3 per cent, and as high as 4 per cent on properties over £500,000. Adopting the Stamp duty proposals of the Free Enterprise Group would cost the treasury £2.4billion a year. The change is an alternative to the Liberal Democrat policy of bringing in a "mansion tax" on houses worth more than £2million, with the difference in the two sides being whether buyers of lower priced houses should pay nothing, or whether purchasers of large valued mansions should pay more.

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