We have rounded up the key aspects that are likely to impact upon clients and these are as follows:
- On income tax, from April 2019, the personal allowance will increase to £12,500, and the higher rate threshold will rise to £50,000, a year ahead of schedule.
- The chancellor announced that Stamp Duty will be abolished for first time buyers purchasing qualifying shared ownership properties, up to the value of £500,000. This change will apply to relevant transactions with an effective date on or after 29 October 2018, and will also be backdated to 22 November 2017 so those who have not previously claimed this relief can also benefit.
- Separately, the Help to Buy Equity Loan Scheme will be extended to March 2023 but with new restrictions relating to regional property price caps.
- From April 2020, the government will also reform lettings relief so that it only applies in circumstances where the owner of the property is in shared occupancy with the tenant. The final period exemption from lettings relief will also be reduced from 18 months to nine months, but the government will consult on these changes.
- Surprisingly, considering Hammond’s previous remarks and widespread expectation, there were no major changes with regards to pensions. The lifetime allowance will increase in line with the CPI measure of inflation for 2019/20, rising to £1,055,000. Steps towards a pensions dashboard are also being taken, with £5 million earmarked in 2019/20 and more detail to be announced next year. On savings, the ISA adult annual subscription limit will remain unchanged at £20,000.