Further to the valid points on the proposed Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) made by Tim Noble (Letters, 14 October), I believe that LBTT fails Adam Smith’s “ability to pay” test.
So, would it not be better, if such a tax is inevitable, for it to be halved between the buyer and the seller, rather than all of it being borne by the buyer?
After all, it is the seller who is getting all the cash, and who is therefore much more able to afford to pay LBTT than the hard-pressed buyer.
Furthermore, because there is no capital gains tax on private dwellings, imposing 50 per cent of LBTT on the seller would seem logical. As currently proposed, LBTT lets off those who have already benefitted from property inflation, while erecting a huge additional obstacle to families trying to move up the housing ladder, thereby strangling the property market.