Halifax to pay half of borrowers' Stamp Duty bills
Halifax extends its offer to all homebuyers for properties priced £250,000 or less.
Halifax has announced it is to extend its offer of paying 50% of Stamp Duty bills all homebuyers - not just those buying their first home.
This all-encompassing incentive could reduce the total cost of buying a house by up to £1,250 on properties priced £250,000 or less when you take out a mortgage with Halifax.
Stamping out the cost
Stamp Duty for properties costing between £125,000 and £250,000 is currently set at 1% of the total sale price, meaning a homebuyer could be paying between £1,250 and £2,500 in tax to the Government on top of all the other associated costs you are expected to pay when purchasing a property such as:
- Mortgage arrangement fees
- Conveyancing fees
- Valuation and survey costs
- Land registry fee
- Estate agent’s commission
- Removal fees
Stamp Duty can take an already overstretched buyer to the limits of their budget, so this pledge is bound to prove popular with borrowers.
So when can you expect to receive Halifax’s generous half of the money in this split bill venture?
50% of the Stamp Duty charged is paid to a solicitor upon completion of the purchase of the property. This means you will still have to have the money available in the first place to hand over before you get reimbursed.
Stamp Duty hangover
The Government's Stamp Duty holiday finished earlier this year. It is hard to tell if this scheme actually helped in getting first-time buyers on the property ladder. The fact George Osborne refused to extend the holiday perhaps says something about its limited success.
With this in mind do incentives on Stamp Duty actually work in helping people to buy? Should banks like Halifax do more to make mortgages fee free and transparent or should the Government review how it taxes the sales of property instead?