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A Green Light for the Land Market - Budget Comment October 2021

The Autumn Statement delivered in the House of Commons on 27th October delivered a relatively untouched capital taxation system for rural property.

The speculation about changes to the Capital Gains Tax and Inheritance Tax relief rules did not materialise, leaving the farm and development land markets with a green light to continue to react freely to strong demand, and the resulting values over the coming months.

Annual Investment Allowance has been extended until March 2023, giving more clarity for investment by sole traders and partnership businesses, alongside the Super Deduction for companies.

There was good news for rural pubs and farm diversification projects in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with rateable values of up to £110,000.  These are set to benefit from a 50% discount on Business Rates.  The revamp of alcohol duties will clearly be welcomed by many.

The development sector had been expecting an announcement about a cladding tax.  It sounds as though a 4% levy or surcharge will fall on the larger developers, (those with a profit over £25 million). This is proposed to add to a fund for the removal of unsafe cladding. 

At the same time significant funding is to be available for the Natural Environment in many forms, to include peatland restoration, woodland planting and nature restoration.

Further funds have been earmarked for housing, decontaminating brown field sites and for provision of 180,000 more affordable homes.

As far as we can tell from initial reports, overall, the impact of the Budget is relatively positive for the rural community and we anticipate the rural farmland and housing markets will continue with strong demand and values.  

Thomas Birks