The Chancellor has spoken.
But not about housing.
Today’s budget was devoid of any mention of housing issues, or indeed the housing crisis itself, with no new cash committed to initiatives to boost the supply of homes or ease the burden on the country’s PRS landlords.
Despite hundreds of RLA members contacting their MP and relentless campaigning, changes to mortgage interest relief will go ahead as planned and there will be no changes to stamp duty or VAT for building new homes to rent.
George Osbourne’s tax raids were neither fair nor sensible, yet Phillip Hammond has failed to reverse any of them – much to the disappointment of PRS landlords.
Indeed, for those self-employed landlords the budget brought more bad news, with the announcement that National Insurance Contributions for the self-employed will increase by 1% next year and a further 1% the year after.
Likewise, those who have, or are considering, incorporating will see the directors’ tax-free dividend will be reduced from £5,000 to £2,000.
When it comes to good news for the PRS it was slim pickings.
However, the RLA did have some success.
The chancellor’s decision to delay the introduction of Making Tax Digital for those businesses with turnover below the VAT threshold by a year is something the RLA called for in its submission to Government.
The association also welcomes the investment in vocational education, to encourage people into the construction industry and other trades important to boosting housing supply.
RLA Chairman Alan Ward said: “This budget was a missed opportunity by Philip Hammond to right some of the wrongs of his predecessor.
“Those of us out there hoping for a u-turn on controversial policies such as mortgage interest relief changes were left disappointed by a budget that essentially ignored the housing crisis entirely.
“Demand for rented housing is still rising, with 25% growth predicted by 2025. This is a million or more homes. Can the corporates fund all those? I don’t believe so.
“Private landlords provide choice, good value, in short good homes for good people.
“Growth and demand in the market will ultimately decide on the rent we can charge – but none of us can afford to run at a loss, and I believe that government will eventually realise the bargain it gets from private landlords.
“This is not the end. We will continue to campaign against unfair taxation. MIR changes were reversed in Ireland years after their introduction so we will not be giving up the fight and I will be continuing to send that message to Mr Hammond and his successors.”
RLA 1 minute round up of the Spring Budget
See our Policy Manager, John Stewart’s quick response to the spring budget below:
Also, see our a round up of live tweeting below:
— RLA Landlord News (@RLA_News) March 8, 2017