Only 387 properties are stamp duty exempt for first-time buyers in inner London

Michael Lloyd

January 22, 2018

There are just 387 properties currently for sale at £300,000 or less in London travel zones 1 and 2 that would be stamp duty exempt for first-time buyers, online estate agents HouseSimple.com found.

If you extended the search area to include Travel Zone 3, the number of stamp duty exempt properties increases to 1,235.

Sam Mitchell, chief executive of HouseSimple.com, said: “The Chancellor wheeled out his big tax break offering last Autumn to help first-time buyers and attract young voters.

“Unfortunately for the young London buyer, the stamp duty cut, while beneficial to large swathes of the country, won’t make much of a dent in their house buying budget.

“Even a stamp duty saving of £5,000 on properties up to £500,000, which is not something to be sniffed at, won’t be much help if first-time buyers don’t have the funds in the first place to put down substantial deposits needed to buy even a basic starter home in inner London.”

Not surprisingly, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea has the fewest stamp duty exempt properties, with just six, including a tiny 113 square foot studio flat, in SW5, Earls Court.

The boroughs of Camden and City of Westminster, both have just 18 stamp duty exempt properties currently on the market.

The borough of Croydon, which is travel zone 5-6, has the largest number of stamp duty exempt properties on the market today. Croydon has 795 properties at £300k or less, more than double the number in any other London borough.

Most first-time buyers will still have to pay stamp duty if they’re hoping to buy in inner London. There are 4,490 properties in zones1-2, and 7,687 properties in zones 1-3 that are currently on the market at between £300,001 and £500,000 and would be eligible for a £5,000 stamp duty cut.

Mitchell added: “London is seeing an exodus of young professionals, who would prefer to move to more affordable areas of the country, than buy in outer London, and face long commutes every day.

“With the growth of business hubs in many other major cities and the cost of housing considerably lower than in the capital, London is no longer the economic draw it used to be.”

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