2 Sep

Help first-time buyers through stamp duty, AMI urges

Help first-time buyers through stamp duty, AMI urges

The government should be helping those looking to get on the housing ladder by revising stamp duty thresholds, the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI) has stated.

Speaking prior to an announcement of a one-year suspension of duty on homes priced under £175,000 by chancellor Alistair Darling, AMI director general Chris Cummings stated that thresholds have not kept up with rising house prices, meaning more people are having to pay the tax.

He said: "If stamp duty had risen with the rate of inflation the entry level would exclude most first-time buyers as opposed to the current level of £125,000."

Mr Cummings also called for a review of income support for mortgage interest.

The Chartered Institute of Housing has also offered its own recommendations, including a centrally funded and administered system to assist those having problems paying their mortgages.

Running this on a national basis would prevent a "postcode lottery" of people in some areas getting more help than others elsewhere, the body suggested.

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