“Well that is not what we wanted to hear, was the resounding moans across the country,” said Oliver Meddick, Director of The Moving Hub, following the national spending review. An announcement to extend the stamp duty land tax holiday was widely anticipated. However, Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, omitted the topic from the event, sparking widespread disappointment throughout the property industry. With the deadline of 31 March 2021 fast approaching, concerns are growing for the impact the sudden end will have on the market.
Industry professionals are mindful of transactions yet to complete, which risk falling through if they miss the tax break. The market is still benefitting from the unexpected reaction to the first national lockdown. While this is key to keep the economy moving, the sudden spike in demand has caused a bottleneck for completions. Delays are being encountered across the board. Conveyancers, estate agents, mortgage brokers, and more property professionals, are working tirelessly to clear the backlog.
For many potential homebuyers, the tax holiday is key to securing their purchase. Without it, many will no longer be able to afford their new property or will face delays. As a result, firms across the country are putting in extra hours to push completions through to meet the deadline. But fear of a ‘cliff-edge’ in the market is rising. Almost half of the current cases are predicted to miss out on the savings. It is not known what effect this will have on the market.
A petition has been launched on the official Parliament website, requesting a six-month extension of the deadline. Jonathan Steel, the person that started the petition, wrote: “Extending the Stamp Duty Holiday for an additional six months will assist many buyers who are looking to move to a property that they will not be able to afford otherwise.” Mr. Steel, himself a prospective buyer, is looking to purchase a new build due to complete in early March. Without the discount from the stamp duty land tax holiday, he will not be able to afford his purchase.
There are many homebuyers across England and Northern Ireland in the same position. Cases unable to complete in time for the deadline could dramatically impact the market, as well as the economy. At The Moving Hub, we believe there is a better way. A gentle tapering of the reinstatement of the stamp duty tax could prevent the cliff from happening and keep the market steady. At the time of writing, the petition has over 16,500 signatures. Click here to sign the petition and join the call to extend the stamp duty land tax holiday!
There are many positive signs in the marketplace. Lenders are returning with increased LTVs and more lenders are returning to the market. This all points to a busy 2021 for the property industry, with more opportunities for buying and selling property. A sensible approach to the stamp duty land tax holiday from the government will establish a strong foundation for the coming year.
The Moving Hub is here to support both you and your clients. If you have clients looking to benefit from the tax break, they need to act now. Any delay will reduce their chance of completing in time. To avoid disappointment, contact us today to find out how we can help!