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They take but they still want - or Dealing with Governments

Who to believe in Government? A question that is asked often and with good reason (along with can you believe in government at all!). Investors looking to put large amounts of money into PRS, must have wondered if Minister Brandon Lewis was talking from the other side of the looking glass when they had just been hit by the Chancellor's Budget statement on the 3% extra SDLT levy (see the report from IPE below). At MIPIM this week, he said  that the government's policy on SDLT was about fairness for big and small landlords, but added that it should not affect institutional investment. Everyone looked out of the window for the flying pigs, I am sure. More homes, anyone?

The UK government has dropped plans to exempt large investors from a 3% residential property tax, causing concern for the country’s emerging private rented sector (PRS).Yesterday’s UK Budget included changes to stamp duty land tax (SDLT) on buy-to-let residential property, as well as higher SDLT rates for commercial transactions.Despite earlier consultation, UK chancellor George Osborne announced that SDLT would apply for investors owning or buying 15 or more residential properties.Melanie Leech, chief executive of the British Property Federation (BPF), which had previously urged the government to adopt a “sensible” SDLT regime, said: “The government’s decision to not include an exemption for investors who are purchasing large portfolios of properties for rent is extremely disappointing and deals a huge blow to the build-to-rent sector.””