Stamp Duty up 82% since 2002

Stamp Duty has rocketed by a shocking 82% in just six years, new research from Halifax reveals.

The data shows that since 2002 the average Stamp Duty bill for first-time buyers has gone up by £800, rising over the six years from £960 to a whopping £1,751.

First-time buyers in Greater London face the biggest Stamp Duty woes, with the average bill up 364% to £8,675 compared with £1,868 in 2002.

The research also reveals a gaping North-South divide in the number of first-time buyers who pay Stamp Duty in England.

Last year, the average first-time buyer paid Stamp Duty in 99% of the South’s local authorities compared with just 42% of councils in the North.

These figures come as press- ure mounts on the government to increase the minimum Stamp Duty threshold to help alleviate the strain on aspiring first-time buyers.

Since 2004, Mortgage Strategy has campaigned for the government to raise Stamp Duty thresholds for first-timers.

With the housing market feeling the effects of the US credit crunch and the domestic liquidity crisis, hopefully the government will finally Step Up Stamp Duty in the forthcoming Budget.

Nigel Stockton, managing director of HBOS Intermediaries, says: “I applaud the magazine for its campaign to keep the topic high up the political agenda.

“Along with many others in the industry, I hope thresholds change significantly in the forthcoming Budget, particularly to help first-time buyers.”

Martin Ellis, chief economist at Halifax, says: “Stamp Duty thresholds should be raised to compensate for house price increases in the past decade. Political parties should also commit to index thresholds to house price inflation in the future.”