Autumn Statement 2015 – key announcements
In today’s Autumn Statement announcement George Osborne put the spending review centre stage and shone the spotlight brightly on the government’s plans for creating consistent economic growth whilst reducing dependency on welfare.
The good news is that, having had two budgets this year, there were few additional changes to taxation announced, so any planning that has been done based on the July budget will, for many, remain largely unchanged.
The most significant tax announcement likely to be of interest to our clients is the addition of an extra 3% stamp duty land tax on the purchase of second homes or buy to let properties from April 2016. Also, from 2019, capital gains tax due on the disposal of any residential property will be required to be paid within 30 days of completion. For some, this will be complex, as the rate of capital gains tax at present can depend on disposal of other assets in the year and other income earned, which may not be fully known until after this date. As is often the case, it appears to be an idea that will be more challenging to administer than it first sounds!
Those involved in property development will welcome the announcement that 400,000 affordable housing properties and 135,000 joint ownership homes are to be built by 2021, which will provide opportunities for private sector contracts.
Other changes that may affect the back pockets of individuals and/or companies are:
- Car insurance costs are expected to drop an average of £40 to £50 per motor insurance policy, due to measures set to tackle the “excessive costs brought about by unnecessary whiplash claims”.
- Local councils will be able to increase council tax by up to 2% to raise funds for adult social care.
- Commuters will be able to benefit from ‘part time’ season tickets on certain rail lines across the country, including C2C between London and Essex, and the Great Northern Route Thameslink.
- Diesel supplement element of company car tax will remain in place until 2021.
In addition, some prior consultations and announcements from the Summer Budget got nudged a little further forwards today – fuller details will follow tomorrow.
For further information contact Anne-Maree Dunn.