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Brexit, Stamp Duty and Help to Buy

Big hurdles to face for the housing market

With the economy and housing market likely to be weighed down by unemployment and falling incomes by the end of the year, the last thing we need is stumbling Brexit negotiations crushing business and consumer confidence. Recent media reports are however painting a rather bleak picture with stalemates in many areas of the ‘Agreement’.

Whatever happens with Brexit negotiations, due to be finalised on December 31st, the next big hurdle comes on March 31st when the Stamp Duty cut and Help to Buy in its present form come to an end. Pressure is mounting on the chancellor to extend the Stamp Duty holiday in some form – previous changes to the tax show that it tends to skew the market by pulling forward transactions, causing a rise in sales followed by a dramatic fall.

There is added urgency with evidence that sales are taking longer because valuations and conveyancing services are overwhelmed. Sellers are being told they need to get their property on the market this month if they are to complete by the deadline.

In Wilsons, we cannot fail to agree. The surge of activity which was triggered by the Stamp Duty cut has most definitely resulted in a surge of successful transactions to the delight of many buyers and sellers who had not expected to realise their ambitions anytime soon – especially following the period of lockdown caused by the Coronavirus.

So, with an end in sight for the valuable incentives remaining on offer, we too strongly advise anyone thinking about buying or selling to make their move at their earliest opportunity if they want to complete by the present deadline. If that may include YOU – call us today. We’ll move fast – so you can!   

By Chris Willey

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