Other announcements: SDLT holiday continues to end of June

Stamp duty land tax (SDLT)

Due to COVID-19, the Chancellor previously announced a temporary increase to the nil-rate band for residential property before SDLT was due, from £125,000 to £500,000, for the period 8 July 2020 to 31 March 2021.

Budget 2021 announced a staged withdrawal of this measure by extending it to 30 June 2021, then introducing a nil-rate band of £250,000 from 1 July 2021 to 30 September 2021.

This will apply to transactions in England and Northern Ireland with an effective date between 1 April 2021 and 30 September 2021.

Mortgage guarantee scheme

A new mortgage guarantee scheme will kick in from April 2021, providing a guarantee to lenders across the UK who offer mortgages to people with a deposit of just 5% on homes with a value of up to £600,000. The scheme will be available for new mortgages up to 31 December 2022.

Late payments & late submissions

A new points-based penalty regime is coming in for regular tax return submission obligations, which will replace the existing penalties for VAT, income tax and self-assessment.

Those who persistently do not comply by missing filing deadlines will be issued fixed financial penalties of £200 once a points threshold has been breached.

If they continue to miss submission deadlines after this point, they will become liable for a further fixed-rate penalty for each additional missed obligation.

The late-payment penalty regimes across the main taxes will also be aligned, with the new late-payment penalty consisting of two separate charges.

As was previously the case, a taxpayer will not be liable to a point or penalty if they had a reasonable excuse for late filing, and will have a right to appeal against both points and penalties.


Fuel duty and short-haul air passenger duty remain unchanged, as do alcoholic duties for beer, cider, wine and spirits.

Landfill tax

Landfill tax is charged in England and Northern Ireland on material disposed of at a landfill site.

Standard and lower rates are being increased on 1 April 2021 to £96.70 per tonne and £3.10 per tonne, respectively.

Vehicle excise duty (VED)

The Government has announced VED rates for cars, vans and motorcycles will increase in line with the Retails Prices Index (RPI) from 1 April 2021.

Red diesel

From 1 April 2022, the use of red diesel and rebated biofuels will be restricted to qualifying purposes only.

The measure is aimed at incentivising business to move to more energy-efficient alternatives.

Tobacco duty

The rates of duty previously announced will be consolidated into Finance Bill 2021, increasing the duty rates on all tobacco products by RPI plus 2% and on hand-rolling tobacco products by RPI plus 6% with effect from 16 November 2020.

Gaming duty

Gross gaming yield bands for gaming duty will increase in line with inflation from 1 April 2021.

Aggregates levy

The Government will freeze the aggregates levy rate for 2021/22, but intends to return to index-linking in future.