Stamp duty hike on second properties to bite this week
A stamp duty hike for people purchasing second properties such as buy-to-let investments and holiday homes comes into force in Northern Ireland on Friday.
The move will mean that people buying a second home will pay three percentage points above current stamp duty rates.
While it could put off some investors and lead to some pushing up rents to offset their costs, it could also provide some aspiring first-time buyers with a window of opportunity.
The new rates of stamp duty land tax (SDLT) will apply to purchases of additional residential properties in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
However, people who temporarily end up with two properties due to difficult circumstances, such as retirees downsizing into a smaller property, will be given some breathing space from the new stamp duty rate.
The Government decided that purchasers will have 36 months rather than the originally proposed 18 months to claim a stamp duty refund, in the event that there is a period of overlap.