In land revenue: the case for a Land Value Tax in the UK

Document type
Hull, Andy
Centre for Labour and Social Studies
Date of publication
1 May 2013
Think piece
Housing and Homelessness, Social Policy
Social welfare
Material type

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This paper argues that our current land economy does not serve us well, and proposes in response a Land Value Tax for the UK. A Land Value Tax, targeted at unproductive wealth and speculation, could help deliver the house-building revolution – and the economic revival – Great Britain needs. It would incentivise those who trade and sit on empty land to develop it for the common good. It would mean that the costs and proceeds of investment were more fairly shared. And it would be impossible to evade. It should be levied on all land except for that which lies under ordinary people’s homes. Very wealthy homeowners should pay, but those with limited incomes could defer payment where required. For it to work, all land ownership would have to be declared. The valuation process might not be straightforward, but it has been done before in Britain, and it is done elsewhere in the world. Existing systems used for current taxes could be built upon. The value of land for taxation purposes should be based upon its optimum permitted use, so farmers would not be badly hit, while landowners sitting on developable land could build it out or pay in accordance with its value.

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