Article Posted -
17 May 2017

The Liberal Democrats have today (May 17th) launched their manifesto for the 2017 general election, taking place on 8th June.

You can view the manifesto on their website, or download it in full here.

Lib Dem Manifesto 2017

 

Below is a quick summary of the key pledges that would impact upon landlords’ businesses and the wider private rented sector.

Tax

  • Unsurprisingly, the manifesto makes no mention of reversing or reviewing the “Tenant Tax”/Section 24 restriction on mortgage interest relief.
  • Reverse a number of the Conservatives’ tax cuts, including:
    • -  The cutting of Corporation Tax from 20% to 17%.
    • -  Capital Gains Tax cuts.
    • -  Capital Gains Tax extended relief.
  • “Reform” dividend tax relief (although does not go into detail on how it will be reformed).
  • “Reform” Corporation Tax, shifting it away from a profits-based tax to one that takes account of a wider range of economic activity indicators, such as sales and turnover.
  • Consider the implementation of Land Value Taxation.

Private Rented Sector

  • Introduce a new Rent to Own model where rent payments give tenants an increasing stake in the property, owning it outright after 30 years.
  • Ban lettings fees for tenants, capping upfront deposits and increasing minimum standards in rented homes.
  • Establish a new Help to Rent scheme to provide government-backed tenancy deposit loans for all first-time renters under 30.
  • Give tenants first refusal to buy the home they are renting from a landlord who decides to sell during the tenancy at the market rate according to an independent valuation.
  • Promote longer tenancies of three years or more with an inflation-linked annual rent increase built in, to give tenants security and limit rent hikes.
  • Improve protections against rogue landlords through mandatory licensing and allow access for tenants to the database of rogue landlords and property agents.

Energy Efficiency

  • Pass a new Green Buildings Act to set new energy-efficiency targets, including a long-term ambition for every home in England to reach at least an energy rating of Band C by 2035.
  • Ensure that at least four million homes are made highly energy efficient (Band C) by 2022, with priority given to fuel-poor households.
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