Local elections: Tories pledge to give councils more powers over property tax
The Scottish Conservatives have said councils should be given more power to change property taxes to be more applicable to local areas.
Speaking ahead of the publication of the party's local government manifesto, leader Douglas Ross said local authorities should be granted the ability to vary Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) thresholds to take into account higher local prices.
LBTT replaced UK Stamp Duty Land Tax in Scotland in April 2015. It is a tax applied to residential and commercial land and buildings transactions.
The Scottish Conservative local government manifesto will include a pledge to support raising the national threshold for LBTT from £145,000 to £250,000 to better suit rising house prices.
The price of homes in Scotland has been steadily increasing, but with considerable difference in prices across the country, with prices in Glasgow and Edinburgh being substantially higher than other areas.
Ross also announced plans to increase homebuilding targets to 25,000 new properties per year as well as doubling the funds of the Rural Housing Fund, to promote construction in remote and rural communities.
He said: “Every working person across Scotland should have the opportunity to buy their own home.
“We have to do more to promote housebuilding because the best way to address the increases in house prices is to build more homes. Across Scotland, there is a real need for more affordable and high-quality homes.
“We are setting out proposals to increase housebuilding across Scotland that would make homes more affordable and provide a huge boost to local economies.
“Scottish Conservative councillors will support increasing the rate of housebuilding and encourage home ownership for more working people across Scotland."