Budget 2015: Measures we expect George Osborne to unveil in first Tory budget in 19 years

Housing benefit and tax credits are expected to be cut, while tax breaks will come in the form of rises in the inheritance tax and income tax thresholds

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Indy Politics

George Osborne's Budget will mark a historic moment for him and his party as he spells out the details of the first Conservative budget in more than 19 years.

Benefit cuts totalling £12bn

Mr Osborne is expected to announce where he will find the £12bn worth of welfare cuts promised in the Tory manifesto.

Benefit payments to be subject to a regional cap – £23,000 per year in London and £20,000 outside of the capital - down from the current cap of £26,000.

The £26bn housing benefit bill is expected to be reduced by removing it from people under the age of 21, while the benefit could also be restricted to 90 per cent of rental costs irrespective of the sums involved.

There are also expected to be significant changes limiting tax credits for those on lower incomes. The £30bn bill for tax credits is currently the largest unprotected area of the welfare budget and there have been reports that it could be the source of £5bn of the overall £12bn cut in welfare.

BBC TV licence fee

The BBC will have to pay for free TV licences for the over 75s saving the Government £650 million a year.

Inheritance Tax

There will be a new “family homes allowance” that will raise the threshold before inheritance tax is paid to £500,000 for an individual and £1m for couples.

Currently, inheritance tax is charged at 40 per cent above threshold of £325,000 for an individual and £650,000 for married couples and civil partners. This will be paid for by new restrictions on the tax benefits for high end pensions.

Tax avoidance clampdown

The Tory manifesto committed to finding £5bn from tackling tax evasion, aggressive tax avoidance and tax planning. They may also be a new clamp down on so-called non-dom residents – although Mr Osborne is not expect to match Labour’s election pledge to abolish the tax status entirely.

Personal tax changes

In the Queen’s speech, the government committed to no increases in VAT, national insurance or income tax during the new parliament.  There are likely to be moves to increase the level at which income first tax kicks in to £12,500 (it is due to rise from £10,800 to £11,000 next year) and start raising the 40p tax threshold to £50,000.

Students

Maintenance grants for poorer students will be scrapped and turned into loans.

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