To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what would be the total cost to the Treasury in 1987–88 of mortgage interest tax relief, if such relief were restricted to base rate income tax; and if he will estimate the regional share of mortgage interest tax relief, restricted to base rate income tax, based on the most recent available data from the family expenditure survey.
[holding answer 14 December 1987]: The cost of mortgage interest relief in 1987–88 is estimated to be about £4¾ billion, of which £330 million relates to the cost of relief at income tax rates in excess of basic rate.For a regional distribution of mortgage interest relief based on data from the family expenditure survey (FES), I refer the hon. Gentleman to the reply which I gave the hon. Member for Caernarfon (Mr. Wigley) on 22 July at columns
233–34. As the sample size for the FES is relatively small, estimates of the regional distribution of mortgage interest relief at basic rate based on the F'ES would not be significantly different from the distribution of total mortgage interest relief.