Stamp duty ‘should be scrapped’

Stamp duty for first-time buyers (FTBs), such as those looking to buy a house in Scotland, should be scrapped, according to the chairman of the New Homes Marketing Board.

David Pretty said that stamp duty levels are "in need of major review", labelling it an unfair tax for FTBs.

"The current threshold starts at one per cent above £125,000 and rises to three per cent over £250,000. This may have been reasonable when it was introduced, but has been savagely eroded in recent years by house price inflation," Mr Pretty said.

For young buyers, such as those looking to buy a house in Scotland, stamp duty represents a "huge extra financial burden", he added.

Property purchased for less than £125,000 currently has no stamp duty attached to it, according to the Directgov website, but just £1 over this amount can see house buyers paying more than £1,200 in stamp duty at the one per cent rate.