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Permanent £425k stamp duty threshold would mostly aid southerners

First-time buyers in the South of England who buy costlier properties would be the real winners if the minimum stamp duty threshold of £425,000 was made permanent, Zoopla analysis shows.

It’s being reported that this will be a pledge in the Conservative manifesto this week, as the minimum stamp duty threshold for first-time buyers is due to return to £300,000 in March next year.

As it stands, up to half of first-time buyers in London look to buy homes priced between £250,000 and £425,000.

The current threshold means eight in 10 first-time buyers across the UK don’t pay any stamp duty, as just 15% shop for homes between £425,000 and £625,000.

Richard Donnell, executive director at Zoopla, said: “A return to the old rules and price thresholds would have seen 30% of first-time buyers paying stamp duty once again.

“The primary challenge for first-time buyers remains the need to afford higher mortgage rates and pass mortgage affordability tests. For many, this means injecting more equity into home purchases to reduce the level of income needed to buy. This impacts buyers across southern England where house prices are highest and average deposits are over £60,000

“Building more homes at a wider range of price points and developing a market for long term fixed-rate mortgages are the key building blocks to help first-time buyers long term”