The Chancellor’s “Robin Hood” approach to Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) could inadvertently prompt a short term boost for the residential housing market, according to chartered surveyors and estate agents Bigwood in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Bigwood director Graham Carter said that while the two-year holiday for first time buyers of homes valued at £250,000 or less would have limited impact in Stratford-upon-Avon, the Chancellor’s decision to increase Stamp Duty from April 6, 2011 on properties over £1 million might prompt movement at the top end of the market.

“StampDutyLandTax – whether at four per cent or five per cent – is chargeable on the whole of the purchase price, not just the element over £1 million.

“his means that by buying before April 6, 2011, you can save at least £10,000 or more, depending on the purchase price agreed.

“In Warwickshire and the Cotswolds, you don’t have to look far to see where sums like £25,000 could be saved, and this is no small beer – even for millionaires.”

He said the SDLT changes had been welcomed overall by the RICS as at the lower end the cut meant that 90 per cent of first time buyers would now not pay any Stamp Duty, but property sales could still be held back by the ongoing lack of housing supply and restricted mortgage lending.

“In reality, we need to wait until we have the result of the upcoming General Election and then we will see if this five per cent rate will definitely be levied from April 6, 2011.

“But at present we need to assume that it will. The marketing of major country properties requires time and we may see a surge of inquiries about sales at top end of the market this Spring.”