Shock Stamp Duty Bill for Many Buyers

Stamp Duty
Many buyers are unlikely to complete on their property purchase before 31 March and will therefore not be able to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday, according to the latest Rightmove survey.

An estimated 100,000 buyers could miss out on the saving and end up with a shock stamp duty bill of thousands of pounds that they hadn’t budgeted for, says the online portal. It added that 613,000 properties had exchanged but not yet completed as buyers wait for the necessary legal work to be completed.

Another national lockdown has not helped with the delays already being experienced with solicitors and lenders working from home while trying to deal with the deluge in demand. Although the housing market in theory remains open, it now takes more than four months to get a deal over the line.

With only a matter of weeks left, those who are keen to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday must seek advice. A good whole-of-market broker who can identify a lender which is dealing with applications quickly, is a must. The broker will also ensure your application processes in a timely way by making sure all necessary information is supplied promptly and responding to any queries quickly.

A good lawyer is another essential and it is worth paying a bit more to engage someone who will be efficient. Some lenders often offer free conveyancing as part of a package. However, these could become inundated with new cases at peak times so you could experience significant delays in the processing your transaction.

If all else fails, it may be worth considering bridging finance. This is a short-term product which can be arranged quickly and may enable you to complete on your purchase before the deadline, enabling you to pay back the bridging loan once your mortgage is approved. If you are considering bridging finance, then you need specialist advice; AWS can identify the right bridging lender for your needs so please get in touch for more information. *You do need to take into consideration that there are extra costs involved with this type of finance and it may not be suitable in every circumstance.
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