Landlords’ body is urging George Osborne to go for growth, by boosting the supply of homes to rent, which is vital to support access to jobs. That’s the view of landlords, say the RLA, as the Chancellor prepares to deliver his emergency budget on Wednesday.
Responding to a parliamentary question last month, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke MP noted that private rented housing: “supports the economy through improved labour market flexibility.”
The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) is calling on the Chancellor to use his budget to go for growth and support the sector to provide the new homes to rent that the country desperately needs.
With the vast majority of landlords being individuals renting out just a few properties, the RLA is calling for the Government to use the tax system to recognise this as a business activity which it currently does not.
Among its proposals made to the Treasury, the RLA is calling for an end to the anomaly that means that VAT can be reclaimed where a new home is built for owner occupation but not for rent.
To support the Government’s ambitions for home-ownership, the RLA is calling also for roll-over relief on Capital Gains Tax where the sale of a rented property is to a first-time buyer, with suitable controls to prevent abuse, such as an upper limit on price.
Commenting ahead of the Budget, RLA Chairman, Alan Ward, said:
“The private rented sector is now the only housing tenure growing, with demand set to increase further.
“As the Financial Secretary to the Treasury has alluded to, encouraging growth in the sector is good for jobs and good for all those looking for a home.
“The Chancellor has a golden opportunity to go for growth which we urge him to seize.”
The RLA represents almost 20,000 private sector residential landlords in England and Wales.
On the 9 th June 2015, Christopher Chope MP (Conservative, Christchurch) received a response to his written parliamentary question asking the Treasury what recent assessment it had made of the contribution that private-sector residential landlords make to the economy. Responding, David Gauke MP, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury said:
“According to the latest figures published by the Department for Communities and Local Government, the private rental sector accounts for 19% of housing in the UK.
“These properties make an important contribution in balancing the wider housing market, which requires a mix of tenures in order to operate effectively. The provision of rented accommodation also supports the economy through improved labour market flexibility.”
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