Summer statement brings good news for landlords and tenants

10th July 2020

Landlords and their tenants look set to benefit from new funding for energy efficiency improvements and a temporary cut to stamp duty announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

The chancellor’s summer statement, aimed at boosting the housing market and the flagging economy after the COVID-19 outbreak, aims to upgrade over 600,000 homes across England, saving households hundreds of pounds per year on their energy bills.

From September, landlords and homeowners can apply for vouchers of up to £5,000 to fund projects such as insulation, eco-friendly boilers and other energy efficient improvements. Households on the lowest incomes could get up to £10,000.

The chancellor estimates the Green Homes Grant will cover up to two thirds of energy efficiency improvement costs per household, as well as reducing ongoing energy bills.

Stamp duty holiday

Rishi Sunak also incentivised potential buy-to-let landlords by scrapping the Stamp Duty levy for all houses under £500,000 (the previous cap was £125,000), which could save up to £15,000 off their total tax bill.

Rightmove reported a sharp rise in searches for property on its website after yesterday’s announcements. It is estimated that the stamp duty holiday is likely to save the typical BTL investor in Yorkshire and the Humber £1,550, based on a home costing £202,502.

The stamp duty holiday continues until the end of March 2021. It does not cover the 3% surcharge for additional homes, including buy-to-let properties, which will now apply to all homes bought for under £500,000.

Energy efficient homes “more appealing”

Letters’ Managing Director Anya Mathewson welcomed the announcement, saying: “The Green Homes Grant will benefit both landlords and their tenants because warmer, energy efficient homes are more appealing and cheaper to run. Landlords who take advantage of the scheme to invest money in their properties will find they get a good return in terms of both rentability and the home’s value.”

She added: “I hope the stamp duty holiday proves to be an incentive for potential buy-to-let landlords to take the plunge. York has a shortage of good rental properties and an influx of new homes to rent in our area would be very welcome.”