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Industry body urges major tax breaks to boost Build To Rent

The British Property Federation is urging Chancellor Phillip Hammond to bring in tax measures to help the purpose-built Build To Rent sector assist the government in meeting its housing targets. 

BPF figures show that in the past year the number of BTR units in with planning permission, under construction or completed in the UK has surged by over 200 per cent to 67,000 units. The regions have seen an increase of almost 400 per cent, from 7,000 units in October 2015 to over 34,000 a year on.

The BPF has stressed that although these figures are encouraging, the sector could be delivering far more homes. This is particularly the case at the moment, as investors, with a potential £50bn to invest, look for stable income and investment sectors that will be relatively unaffected by any Brexit market turbulence.

To further boost activity the BPF has therefore asked government to consider changes to the stamp duty surcharge on additional homes at the Autumn Statement, which would provide a shot in the arm to the sector.

In its Autumn Statement submission, the BPF has also urged the Chancellor to introduce clearer national planning policy for build to rent developments, and to allow flexibility on space standards by up to 10 per cent.

“Build To Rent has been one of the good news stories of the housing market over the past few years and it is great to see quality rental homes now coming on to the market at scale. The truth is the sector could be delivering so much more, however, if it can find the opportunities and maintain confidence to invest” says Melanie Leech, BPF chief executive.

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