Call to change tax on bulk purchases

The British Property Federation has appealed to chancellor Alistair Darling ahead of the Budget this week to change the way Stamp Duty is levied when properties are bought in bulk.

Currently, bulk purchases are charged on the total price at 4%, the highest tax rate applicable. But individual properties are taxed at marginal rates which range from 0% to 4%. The trade body says this is a disincentive to investment.

In a letter to Darling, Liz Peace, chief executive of the BPF, states: “We would like to see bulk purchases of residential property taxed at the marginal rate applied to each unit, levelling the playing field between individual purchasers and those making larger scale investments.”