From pensions to buy-to-let tax changes, more needs to be doneby Andy Davis / December 14, 2017 / Leave a comment
Published in January 2018 issue of Prospect Magazine
Evidence has recently emerged that the buy-to-let (BTL) tax changes George Osborne introduced while Chancellor (particularly the phased removal of tax relief on mortgage interest and 3 per cent extra stamp duty) are having their desired effect. Lending data suggests BTL owners are selling properties and paying down debt. This tax squeeze on rental property may or may not be positive for the housing market, but it is very unhelpful for one group the government says it wants to help: the self-employed.
Success in encouraging people to join workplace pensions thanks to automatic enrolment—now up to 8.5m employees—is an achievement ministers are justly proud of. Recently, they have been looking at ways to pull in the self-employed, largely due to figures showing that just 12 per cent of this growing group contributes to a personal pension against 60 per cent of employees. A previous solution, the Lifetime Isa, has gone nowhere so now there is talk of fiddling with National Insurance to create something similar to auto-enrolment.