In an age of austerity landlords have made £177 billion in capital gain alone over the past five years. On top of this they have received £30-40 billion in rent a year, including about £9 billion a year in Housing Benefit.
Landlords are able to outbid owner occupiers who don't realise a cash return in the same way, making the housing market skewed in their favour. They get Mortgage Interest relief that isn't available to homeowners, many loopholes for releasing capital gain without paying Capital Gains Tax, and a special landlord tax break called the "Wear and tear" allowance.
When they're making so much money, we don't think they should be getting such huge taxpayer subsidies - particularly when they are estimated to be underpaying half a billion pounds of tax that they are supposed to be paying each year.
We think there should be a more level playing field between landlords and homeowners in the housing market and that taxpayers should not be bolstering landlords' profits. The simplest way to redress this unfairness would be to implement a national register of landlords, with a landlord tax and a punitive penalty on failure to register. A 30% landlord tax on rental income would balance out all the Housing Benefit private landlords receive.
To support a landlord tax, sign the petition here.