Debate Magazine

Mansion Tax Fun

Posted on the 20 February 2015 by Markwadsworth @Mark_Wadsworth

What riles me is when people contradict themselves several times in the space of one article:
Leading think tank the Centre for Policy Studies slammed the annual levy and said it would damage the UK’s investor-friendly reputation, deter workers in sectors such as financial services from moving to London, and chase away high net worth individuals from doing business in Britain...
There's no real life evidence for any of that; quite observably, high corporation tax rates discourage people from "doing business in Britain" and high income tax rates and Inheritance Tax rates chase truly wealthy people away, but all the evidence is that they are heartily indifferent about the cost of owning a home. Or else they wouldn't be willing to pay £2.4 million for the terraced house in Fulham pictured in the article, or to pay the property tax in New York ($100,000s a year on the most expensive ones) or to pay the Swiss lump-sum tax (instead of income tax, you can opt to pay a fairly hefty property value tax, about 5% - 8% of what your Swiss main residence is worth).
But never mind, everybody is entitled to their opinion.
The paper also accused a mansion tax of being “crude” and not distinguishing between those who have the means to pay it and those who do not.
Ah, so they'd prefer higher income tax? Which genuinely does chase truly wealthy people away and by osmosis, attracts lower income people?
At the very top end of the scale, those individuals who buy multi-million pound homes through companies will just soak up the extra tax, said Mr Moran.
Faced with the choice of paying £7,000 Mansion Tax (their estimate) if they own the home personally or £23,350 if they own it via a company..?
So can he make up his mind; the truly wealthy will pay it out of petty cash or they'll pack up and move abroad? It's one or t'other, moron.
“It will be the lesser valued properties for whom [homeowners] suddenly every year will have to find an extra £3,000, and we’ll see a lot of elderly homeowners selling up, which will make people very angry.”
Nice diagonal comparison there!
Why would anybody get "angry" about this; the elderly who cash in and buy themselves something equally lovely but somewhere less fashionable and have a million quid spending money? Their heirs? The people who can now buy in London for a lower price? The estate agents who get some extra commissions and the painters and decorators who tart it up for the new owners? Who?

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