Property buyers will have breathed a small sigh of relief as Chancellor Rishi Sunak read out his budget statement on Wednesday.

While there was little to cheer in his measures, some relief could be had from the absence of any unpleasant surprises in his measures.

The day started positively with an announcement by the Bank of England that interest rates were to be cut from 0.75% to 0.25%, intended to boost economic activity and to help offset the effects of the coronavirus.

The big winners are expected to be those on variable and tracker rate mortgages who stand to save around £25-a-month for every £100,000 they borrow.

A new stamp duty surcharge of 2% for non-UK resident investors, effective from April 1, will not apply to Scottish residential properties, unless the Scottish Government decides to adopt the measure.

The Chancellor decided against raising of the stamp duty threshold to £500,000, an idea floated by his predecessor Sajid Javid, for property buyers in England and Wales.

While this would have been welcome news for landlords and investors south of the border, there were concerns in Scotland at the creation of a two-tier system that could have driven investment south.

For corporate investors, corporation tax remains frozen at 19% and there  was also an announcement of more investment into combatting tax mitigation structures that help some people to evade tax. 

In addition, from April 5, capital gains tax will be payable within 30 days of a property being sold, making it critical to ensure that you keep great records of the original purchase and associated costs.

Meanwhile April will see the full implementation of Section 24 mortgage interest changes that will reduce the amount upon which landlords can claim tax relief.
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