Public Call For Downsizing Stamp Duty Exemptions

Swathes of the population are calling for the Government to offer more incentives which would entice older homeowners to move and ultimately free up vast quantities of family homes.

44% of respondents believe that more help should be offered older home movers, according to recent research from McCarthy & Stone.

The UK developer, specialising in retirement communities, believes these concessions could help address the housing crisis by freeing up housing for younger generations.

In particular, the majority of respondents (61%), the equivalent to 3.2 million people, believe a stamp duty exemption would encourage older home movers to downsize.

The research indicates that, under current stand duty land tax (SDLT) regulations, an existing home owner looking to purchase a £300,000 home will be liable to pay £5,000, a cost obligation deterring too many potential older movers.

Older movers offered extra help would also be more inclined to move into lifestyle or retirement accommodation. 40% of respondents would move if they were offered a stamp duty exemption for moving into purpose-built retirement properties.

Housing options is a major obstacle in the current property market for older movers, with many remaining in their existing home because the current building stock fails to cater to their needs.

Over half of respondents were looking to the Government to encourage more new build starts catered to the retirement market. 59% of respondents believe the Government should ensure more retirement housing is built to provide suitable downsizing options.

52% of those determined to remain independent were looking to the Government to green light more bungalow accommodation.

For many, communication is still an issue with over a third (36%) looking for Governmental support and help with housing options.

John Tonkiss, Chief Executive of McCarthy & Stone, commented:

“This research shows overwhelming support among older people for reforming Stamp Duty to encourage downsizing.

“This would help Generation Stuck – those over-65s who want to downsize but can’t – and also release millions of homes suitable for young people and families. Plus it would provide a net benefit to the Treasury’s coffers from the increased numbers of housing transactions created.”

What needs to be done to encourage more older homeowners to downsize?

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