So Chancellor George Osborne has announced a shake-up for stamp duty – and not before time!

For far too long there has been a noose tied around homeowners necks, who have owned a property close to the key marker points of £125,000, £250,000, £500,000 and £1m. Areas have been left in stifled ‘bubbles’, particularly around the £250 and £500k marks, where they have struggled to gain in value because buyers have been reluctant to part with the massive percentage jump in stamp duty. And under-the-table “fixtures and fittings” deals have kept the registered value below those crucial price-markers.

Finally, however, the government have come up with a sensible solution, based on the income tax model, as follows:

• 0% stamp duty on the first £125,000,
• 2% stamp duty on the proportion up to £250,000,
• 5% stamp duty on the proportion between £250,000 and £925,000,
• 10% stamp duty on the proportion between £925,000 and £1.5m,
• 12% stamp duty on anything over £1.5m.

Previously there was a flat 1% for properties over £125,000, 3% for homes over £250,000, 4% for homes over £500,000, 5% over £1m and 7% over £2m.

The new way is a far fairer method of dealing with stamp duty, and one which we welcome for both buyers and sellers wholeheartedly. Sellers, can at last get a true value on their home, buyers can save considerably. It’s not usual in the property market to say this, but for once it’s win win! Bravo Osborne (yet another thing we don’t say that often!)

To work out how much you now need to pay, there’s a useful stamp duty calculator here.