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6,300 sign online petition against ending BTL tax breaks

An online petition demanding the reinstatement of buy to let landlords' tax breaks has so far attracted 6,300-plus signatures.

The petition, which is entitled 'Reverse the planned tax relief restriction on individual landlords', was set up London-based landlord Ruhal Uddin.

It is the latest response from an angry private rental sector to the Budget announcement by Chancellor George Osborne that tax relief mortgage interest payments and arrangement fees incurred when taking out buy to let mortgages would be restricted to the basic rate of income tax, currently 20 per cent - even if the individual landlord was liable for the payment of higher levels of income tax.

This new measure will be phased in over four years from April 2017.

The online petition - which you can see here - states: 

"We operate as sole traders and incur costs in the course of running our business. The planned restriction will unfairly target us by preventing us from offsetting costs in the same manner as other sole traders. 

"We ask that the planned restriction be reconsidered as it has unfair implications.

"The Institute for Fiscal Studies has stated, in response to the Budget, that individual landlords are already taxed more heavily than other homeowners.

"The private setor is heavily reliant on individual landlords. The planned change is likely to result in higher rents due to landlords looking to offset higher tax liabilities.

"In some cases, employed individuals own buy to let properties as investments for retirement. The planned restriction would adversely and unfairly affect them."

If it attracts 10,000 signatures the government will formally respond in writing to the petition; if it attracts 100,000 signatures the petition may - but not definitely - be considered for a parliamentary debate.

The deadline for signing is January 26 next year.

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