Please see the "LVT: what is it?" page for a straightforward explanation of Land Value Tax (LVT).
Land and housing
We don't have a housing crisis - we have a land crisis.
A brick in Kensington & Chelsea costs the same as a brick in Swadlincote.
A building plot in Kensington & Chelsea has a much higher market value than one in Swadlincote.
Since 2010-11, planning permission for 2.78m houses has been given but only 1.6m have been built.
Why? Because hoarding development land is more profitable than building on it.
- not a tax on land - it is a tax on the market value of land - what someone would pay for it.
- not a tax on homes or gardens - Council Tax is a grossly unfair tax on homes and gardens.
- not a tax on buildings - you can build what you like, subject to planning permission.
- not a threat to land ownership - you can still buy and hold land.
- not a threat to land inheritance - you can still leave it to whomever you wish.
- not a new tax - it replaces existing taxes - initially Council Tax and Business rates.
- not a pancea - others reforms are required to make things fairer.
Cut your Council Tax with LVT!
Important note: LVT is collected nationally and, if it is used to replace Council Tax, it is distributed to Local Authorities according to need - so they can meet their legal obligations. It does not mean that Councils with high value property will do well - the proceeds from the national tax are shared by all local authorities.
- 8 out of 10 (*) Council Tax payers will pay less with Land Value Tax (LVT).
- Those who have never paid a penny tax on the land they own will start to pay LVT.
- Those who can afford most will pay most. Seems fair to us!
- Sharing the load will make our tax system fair - and cut the tax paid by most of us!
* This figure (83%) is shown in "A Land Value Tax For England", prepared for Caroline Lucas MP by Andy Wightman.
The figure applies to the first year of LVT being phased in over a period of 10 years while Council Tax is phased out. This allows plenty of time for us to get used to the changes.
The largest impact would be on very high value properties in Central London and the East. Such properties are currently in Council Tax band H.
Land Value Tax (LVT) has supporters from the right to the left, from the Institute of Economic Affairs to us, and from all political parties: Green, Labour, Liberal Democrat and Conservative. Reasons may vary between organisations and individuals but it comes down to what is fair and what works.
We campaign for the implementation of LVT by whatever government is in power in the interest of social justice and fairness.
We are happy to hear from anyone who supports LVT - irrespective of political position.
Don't be fooled!
LVT is not "a tax on gardens" - despite what the tax-avoiding owners of the Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph, Daily Express and others would like you to believe! Under LVT they may pay more tax on their own land so they, and their "independent think tanks and institutes", will try to pull the wool over your eyes.
Note about "think tanks"
First rule of life: "follow the money."
Look at who funds them - that will tell you everything!
"He who pays the piper calls the tune" - no matter how much they scream about "independence" - that's like claiming The Daily Mail is "independent".
Land Value Tax
The central question of LVT
LVT is what it says on the tin: a tax on the value of land not a tax on the area of land.
Land value is totally determined by what it is worth on the open market.
"How much would someone pay for this land with its current authorised use?"
"How much would someone pay for:
- this 100 acres of fertile arable land near Spalding?"
- this 100 acres of hill land in Derbyshire?"
- this 13,500 acres of grouse moor at Bolton Abbey in Yorkshire?"
- this 12 acres of land near Derby with planning permission for 250 houses?"
- this 0.1 acres of land in Chelsea with planning permission for a six bedroom house?"
- this 1.5 acres of land in Bristol with planning permission for 4 million cubic feet of warehousing?"
Videos about Land Value Tax
These videos were not produced by us but they provide an introduction to LVT.
This land is our land
No-one "owns" land in the UK, since 1066 it has been owned by us all through "The Crown". Land is a national asset and we have the right to know who holds the freehold on it. We don't know for two main reasons:
- The Land Registry only records transactions on land - so we only know about land that has changed hands since the Land Registry was established in 1862. A huge amount of land has remained in the hands of the same families for hundreds of years - but we have no record of who the owners really are.
- The Land Registry records the legal owner, not the beneficial owner. This means that people can hide behind companies, many of which are not registered in this country.
Burying wealth in land, and transferring ownership of that land to a company or trust registered in a tax haven, is one of the easiest ways for the wealthy to avoid tax - and it is perfectly legal!
Land should be used wisely for the benefit of us all and for the benefit of future generations - so we need to know which individuals are responsible for our land.
Laws relating to land are complex and there are different laws in different parts of the UK
See our page on LVT: history of land ownership for more details on the history of land ownership in the UK.
Land Value Tax (LVT)
Public services (health, education etc.) depend on the taxes we pay.
At the moment our national and local tax system is unfair, those who earn the least pay the highest proportion of their income in various taxes. Those with the most find it easy to avoid paying tax through trusts, tax havens and other fiddles.
- Simple to understand.
- Straightforward to implement.
- Impossible to avoid.
- A replacement for existing taxes which are unfair, complex and easy to avoid.
Please see our page LVT: what is it? for more details.