Stamp duty is charged at 1 per cent on properties sold for between £175,000 and £250,000, with the tax jumping to 3 per cent above this level, before rising to 4 per cent on homes worth more than £500,000.
The stamp duty freeze announced in 2008 saves buyers a maximum of £1,750 - and came
as the first major move in the attempted autumn relaunch by Gordon Brown,
who also announced a range of measures to try and help home owners who
face having their properties repossessed because of the credit crisis. Announcing the freeze, Mr Darling said: "We are facing difficult times
- we are in a situation where you are facing the combination of the credit
crunch with high oil and food prices. We haven’t seen this since the 1930s."
In 2010 a new stamp duty holiday only for first-time buyers was launched in the Budget 2010. This exempted those buying their first home from stamp duty up to £250,000 until 25 March 2012. It only applies to those who have never owned a home before.