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Government must respond to 10,000-signature online petition

An online petition demanding the reinstatement of buy to let landlords' tax breaks has broken the 10,000 signatures mark which means the government has to make a formal response.

The petition, which is entitled 'Reverse the planned tax relief restriction on individual landlords', was set up London-based landlord Ruhal Uddin and looked for some days last week as if it may not secure the required 10,000 supporters.

It is the latest industry argument against the announcement last month 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.

The government is now expected to set out its arguments against the petition - and for the continuation of its Budget announcement - in the next few weeks.

If the petition goes on to receive 100,000 signatures before the deadline of January 26, it may trigger a parliamentary debate - although this is not guaranteed.

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 sector 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."

  • Simon shinerock

    Everyone has to sign this, I have and I've written to the Chancellor, as I said before the election, this is by far the BIGGEST issue facing the Industry

  • Mark Wilson

    Latest poll: Private Landlords running a close second behind bankers on the nation’s popularity scale. Estate agents and Letting agents are not far behind in third and fourth place.

    I never understood why government didn’t act on this years ago. How many private tenants or first time buyers signed the petition?

    Tax breaks for property speculators is surprisingly not a vote winner.

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