The Scottish Government is to announce today whether it is replicating the three per cent stamp duty hike on buy to let properties and second homes.
The surcharge announced by UK Chancellor George Osborne last month is to apply from next April to England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but Scotland is today deciding whether to introduce a similar scheme north of the border.
Scotland has already scrapped stamp duty and replaced it with a Land and Buildings Transaction Tax, which is more progressive in its application; it is therefore possible that a BTL/second home surcharge could also be levied but at a different rate to that in the rest of the UK.
The Scottish Government’s Finance Minister, John Swinney, has already indicated that the Budget he is announcing this week will have tough measures because UK government cuts allegedly mean Scotland’s spending powers will be 12.5 per cent lower in real terms by 2019-20 than in 2010-11.
Swinney, who is also the deputy first minister to Nicola Sturgeon, will also today announce the new Scottish Rate of Income Tax (SRIT) - the first time the country has used powers to set its own income tax.