George Osborne has offer accepted on £1.6million – but could face £153,000 stamp duty bill

George Osborne has had an offer accepted on a stunning £1.6 million country retreat – but could face a £153,000 bill thanks to the second home stamp duty policy he pushed through as chancellor. 

The Georgian home is in the picturesque Somerset town of Bruton, and will see Mr Osborne, 49, become neighbours with a range of actors, designers and directors. 

The five-bedroom, late 18th century, Grade II-listed house is set in three acres of grounds in the town dubbed the most fashionable place in Britain by the Times in 2015. 

Mr Osborne reportedly ‘loved’ the house but, under policy he introduced, the former chancellor could be hit by a three per cent stamp duty surcharge.   

This policy, introduced in 2016, means he’d face a tax bill of £153,750 rather than £105,750.

George Osbourne, 49, has had a bid accepted on this £1.6 million, five bedroom, late 18th century Somerset country retreat in Bruton

George Osbourne, 49, has had a bid accepted on this £1.6 million, five bedroom, late 18th century Somerset country retreat in Bruton

George Osbourne, 49, has had a bid accepted on this £1.6 million, five bedroom, late 18th century Somerset country retreat in Bruton

The five-bedroom, late 18th century, Grade II-listed house is set in three acres of grounds in the town dubbed the most fashionable place in Britain by the Times in 2015

The five-bedroom, late 18th century, Grade II-listed house is set in three acres of grounds in the town dubbed the most fashionable place in Britain by the Times in 2015

The five-bedroom, late 18th century, Grade II-listed house is set in three acres of grounds in the town dubbed the most fashionable place in Britain by the Times in 2015

The railway station at Castle Cary, near Bruton, means that he will be able to commute to Paddington in 90 minutes for his main job as editor-in-chief of the Evening Standard

The railway station at Castle Cary, near Bruton, means that he will be able to commute to Paddington in 90 minutes for his main job as editor-in-chief of the Evening Standard

The railway station at Castle Cary, near Bruton, means that he will be able to commute to Paddington in 90 minutes for his main job as editor-in-chief of the Evening Standard

Mr Osborne reportedly 'loved' the house but, under policy he introduced, the former chancellor could be hit by a three per cent stamp duty surcharge

Mr Osborne reportedly 'loved' the house but, under policy he introduced, the former chancellor could be hit by a three per cent stamp duty surcharge

Mr Osborne reportedly ‘loved’ the house but, under policy he introduced, the former chancellor could be hit by a three per cent stamp duty surcharge

The seller of the property, a retired antiques dealer, is building a smaller home for himself on what was the house's croquet lawn

The seller of the property, a retired antiques dealer, is building a smaller home for himself on what was the house's croquet lawn

The seller of the property, a retired antiques dealer, is building a smaller home for himself on what was the house’s croquet lawn

The former chancellor has a history of buying and selling expensive properties both during and after his time in office

The former chancellor has a history of buying and selling expensive properties both during and after his time in office

The former chancellor has a history of buying and selling expensive properties both during and after his time in office

Bruton was described by Country Life as the 'new Notting Hill', after the area in west London and is a haven for wealthy celebrities

Bruton was described by Country Life as the 'new Notting Hill', after the area in west London and is a haven for wealthy celebrities

Bruton was described by Country Life as the ‘new Notting Hill’, after the area in west London and is a haven for wealthy celebrities

Mr Osborne’s tax on second homes has unexpectedly raised £6.6billion in revenue – but isn’t doing what it was designed to do, according to an expert.

WHAT IS STAMP DUTY?

Stamp duty is a tax on the price of a property bought in England and Nothern Ireland.  

Homes which cost less than £125,000 are free of stamp duty.

For those which cost between £125,001 to £250,000 there is a 2 per cent levy. 

This rises to 5 per cent for homes which cost between £250,001 and £925,000. 

From there to £1.5million the levy rises significantly to 10 per cent.

For anything above £1.5million a 12 per cent fee is imposed. 

However, first time buyers are exempt for homes which cost £500,000 or less. 

And what is George Osborne’s surcharge? 

The surcharge, introduced in 2016, is an extra 3 per cent tax on an ‘additional residential property’, such as a second home or one bought as an investment. 

How much does the average buyer pay? 

The average buyer pays £2,400 in England and £13,500 in London, according to the Centre for Policy Studies.  

The tax is not paid in Scotland, which has a separate land and buildings transaction levy. Wales also has a land transaction tax.  

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The 3 per cent stamp duty surcharge on additional properties was introduced by the former Chancellor in 2016.

The Treasury had a £2.9billion target for it of by the end of the 2019/2020 tax year but it has raised billions more, according to figures from HM Revenue & Customs.

Mr Osborne had claimed that the levy, which is paid by buyers on top of existing stamp duty, would dampen the investor market and help first time buyers. 

The tax has hit nearly four million purchases but an expert branded it ‘arbitrary and unfair’ after the figures were reported by The Times

Many of those affected are believed to be neither landlords nor second home buyers.  

Adam Kay, a tax partner at accountants Saffery Champness, told The Times that the tax is not working.

He said: ‘The whole point of this was to stop people buying too much property to stop them clogging up the housing market — many cases have nothing to do with that. It is reasonable to argue that it isn’t working.’   

His new neighbours would include Sir Cameron Mackintosh, the theatre producer, Sam Taylor-Johnson, the film director, Mariella Frostrup, the Times Radio presenter, and Alice Temperley, the fashion designer.  

The seller of the property, a retired antiques dealer, is building a smaller home for himself on what was the house’s croquet lawn.

He met Mr Osborne during a viewing and spoke to the Times about the chancellor. 

He said: ‘He said he loved the house and believed we could be good neighbours. I am sure he is right. It is a wonderful area which has become very vibrant in recent years.’

Bruton was described by Country Life as the ‘new Notting Hill’, after the area in west London.

The former chancellor has a history of buying and selling expensive properties both during and after his time in office.  

Mr Osborne and his wife, Frances, 51, bought a family home in Notting Hill in 2006 for £1.85 million before the house was put on sale for £4.95 million in March after they announced their divorce. 

The split came months after Mr Osborne bought a £3 million chalet in Verbier, Switzerland.

His new neighbours would include Sir Cameron Mackintosh, the theatre producer, Sam Taylor-Johnson, the film director, Mariella Frostrup, the Times Radio presenter, and Alice Temperley, the fashion designer

His new neighbours would include Sir Cameron Mackintosh, the theatre producer, Sam Taylor-Johnson, the film director, Mariella Frostrup, the Times Radio presenter, and Alice Temperley, the fashion designer

His new neighbours would include Sir Cameron Mackintosh, the theatre producer, Sam Taylor-Johnson, the film director, Mariella Frostrup, the Times Radio presenter, and Alice Temperley, the fashion designer

The seller met Mr Osborne during a viewing and said: 'He said he loved the house and believed we could be good neighbours. I am sure he is right. It is a wonderful area which has become very vibrant in recent years'

The seller met Mr Osborne during a viewing and said: 'He said he loved the house and believed we could be good neighbours. I am sure he is right. It is a wonderful area which has become very vibrant in recent years'

The seller met Mr Osborne during a viewing and said: ‘He said he loved the house and believed we could be good neighbours. I am sure he is right. It is a wonderful area which has become very vibrant in recent years’

Mr Osborne's tax on second homes has unexpectedly raised £6.6billion in revenue and he could now be forced to add to the total

Mr Osborne's tax on second homes has unexpectedly raised £6.6billion in revenue and he could now be forced to add to the total

Mr Osborne’s tax on second homes has unexpectedly raised £6.6billion in revenue and he could now be forced to add to the total

Estate agents Knight Frank said: 'Dating from the late 18th century and Grade II listed, Prospect House is a beautifully proportioned Georgian house, built of local stone with Doulting stone dressings and a Welsh slate roof'

Estate agents Knight Frank said: 'Dating from the late 18th century and Grade II listed, Prospect House is a beautifully proportioned Georgian house, built of local stone with Doulting stone dressings and a Welsh slate roof'

Estate agents Knight Frank said: ‘Dating from the late 18th century and Grade II listed, Prospect House is a beautifully proportioned Georgian house, built of local stone with Doulting stone dressings and a Welsh slate roof’

Mr Osborne and his wife, Frances, 51, bought a family home in Notting Hill in 2006 for £1.85 million before the house was put on sale for £4.95 million in March after they announced their divorce

Mr Osborne and his wife, Frances, 51, bought a family home in Notting Hill in 2006 for £1.85 million before the house was put on sale for £4.95 million in March after they announced their divorce

Mr Osborne and his wife, Frances, 51, bought a family home in Notting Hill in 2006 for £1.85 million before the house was put on sale for £4.95 million in March after they announced their divorce

The agency added: 'It has been the home of the current owner for the past 26 years and during that time the house has been renovated throughout'

The agency added: 'It has been the home of the current owner for the past 26 years and during that time the house has been renovated throughout'

The agency added: ‘It has been the home of the current owner for the past 26 years and during that time the house has been renovated throughout’

In 2012, he also made a £400,000 profit on the sale of a farmhouse near his constituency home which had been part funded by his MP expenses. 

He stood down as MP for Tatton at the 2017 general election.

He has since taken on several lucrative jobs including a £1 million-a-year role as a consultant to Blackrock, the fund manager.

The railway station at Castle Cary, near Bruton, means that he will be able to commute to Paddington in 90 minutes for his main job as editor-in-chief of the Evening Standard. 

He was promoted to the position last month, with Emily Sheffield, David Cameron’s sister-in-law, replacing him as editor.

Mr Osborne previously said in May that he was in a relationship with Thea Rogers, 38, his former chief of staff.

Knight Frank wrote: 'The house has great charm and is immaculately presented, with the interior designed to enhance the original architectural features'

Knight Frank wrote: 'The house has great charm and is immaculately presented, with the interior designed to enhance the original architectural features'

Knight Frank wrote: ‘The house has great charm and is immaculately presented, with the interior designed to enhance the original architectural features’

The gorgeous property is sure to be the perfect retreat for the former chancellor, with a half-hour train ride into his job at the Evening Standard in London

The gorgeous property is sure to be the perfect retreat for the former chancellor, with a half-hour train ride into his job at the Evening Standard in London

The gorgeous property is sure to be the perfect retreat for the former chancellor, with a half-hour train ride into his job at the Evening Standard in London

The house is approached via a tree-lined drive, which slopes up gently to a gravelled parking area beside the house with parking space for several cars

The house is approached via a tree-lined drive, which slopes up gently to a gravelled parking area beside the house with parking space for several cars

The house is approached via a tree-lined drive, which slopes up gently to a gravelled parking area beside the house with parking space for several cars

He stood down as MP for Tatton at the 2017 general election. He has since taken on several lucrative jobs including a £1 million-a-year role as a consultant to Blackrock, the fund manager

He stood down as MP for Tatton at the 2017 general election. He has since taken on several lucrative jobs including a £1 million-a-year role as a consultant to Blackrock, the fund manager

He stood down as MP for Tatton at the 2017 general election. He has since taken on several lucrative jobs including a £1 million-a-year role as a consultant to Blackrock, the fund manager

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