Scottish Budget 2018

In response to Thursday’s 2018 Scottish Budget announcements, Mark Coulter, Chief Executive of Coulters said: “While the announcement on LBTT included in today’s Budget is good news for first-time buyers, I think much more needs to be done in order to enhance the property market in Scotland overall. 

“For those purchasing their first home, the relief of up to £175,000 will be welcomed with open arms and looks set to make a big difference, with an estimated 80% of first-time buyers being taken out of LBTT altogether as a result of this. While this is a good starting point, it does appear to simply echo the outcome from the Autumn Budget announced by the Chancellor last month and doesn’t position Scotland as a progressive market.

 “I had hoped to see more dramatic changes to the LBTT system being announced, in order to encourage selling and purchasing further up the ladder. With the rising property prices in Scotland, the higher LBTT rates can be off-putting for buyers and result in current homeowners being unable to sell their property. This in turn means there is less movement in the market and a chance of the Scottish property market slowing down or stagnating.

 “Going forward I would hope to hear more specifics about the planned investment in new build houses, not just affordable housing, and how the Scottish Government is going to ensure Scotland remains a viable place to live and purchase property.

 “As a business owner, I find the increase in income tax disappointing and feel it will ultimately be detrimental to the economy, in the long run, making Scotland less attractive. We should be cutting taxes to encourage inward investment for Scotland to give the economy a much-needed boost.”

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