Plan for Stamp Duty Holiday to be extended by three months

1st March 2021

In July 2020, the government announced the suspension of stamp duty fees on the first £500,000 of all property sales to improve the market in England and Northern Ireland. This provided the opportunity for buyers to save as much as £15,000 if they are purchasing a property that is priced at £500,000 or more.

The stamp duty holiday was due to end of Wednesday 31st March; however, there have been rising pressures calling for an extension to help buyers during this ongoing pandemic. The Times has now reported that as part of the Budget plans this week, Chancellor Rishi Sunak will be moving the deadline to the end of June.

According to Rightmove, there is an enormous number of 613,000 properties that are currently trying to reach completion and what the stamp duty holiday has caused is an acceleration from people who were perhaps planning to move in 2021-2022 to do this now instead to save a large chunk of money. Consequently, the increased demand from buyers has led to higher asking prices and again, producing more growth in the property market. According to HM Revenue & Customers, 129,400 transactions went through in the UK in December, compared with 87,040 in 2014.

Whether this growth will continue this year is still very much unforeseen, however many reports have shown signs that the market is already slowing down. This is why the chancellor has been urged to push back to the deadline with many home buyers scrambling to complete their transactions before the end date.

The three month extension is likely to be be announced in the Budget on Wednesday 3rd March; however, it is unclear whether the extension is for all current and new buyers (of properties up to £500,000) or whether it is a tapered extension only for current buyers.

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