Extensions to Help to Buy and the Stamp Duty Holiday

In the Chancellor’s budget on 3rd March, it was confirmed that the stamp duty holiday on house purchases will be extended for a further three months until the end of June. This decision will see house buyers in England and Northern Ireland continue to benefit from a suspension of Stamp Duty on the first £500,000 of all sale prices. It was further announced that the nil rate band will be set at £250,000 until the end of September, only returning to its standard level from 1st October.

The news will be a welcome relief to those house buyers whose transactions were already underway but had looked unlikely to complete in time to beat the break.

The property industry has also reacted well to the news. Our residential conveyancing team has been extremely busy since the Stamp Duty holiday was introduced last summer and we are pleased that the clients we have already been appointed by will be able to progress and complete the transactions they had already commenced.

House buyers that had thought they were too late to benefit from the Stamp Duty cut may now be reconsidering their position and potentially making a move prior to the end of the temporary reduction. With the popular spring period for the housing industry around the corner, we are hopeful that we will also be able to help buyers that agree purchases in the coming weeks.

The news on Stamp Duty comes a few weeks after it was confirmed that completions under the old Help to Buy scheme have been extended until the end of May to allow longer for homes where purchases had already been started to be built. It has been widely reported that the construction of newly-built homes have suffered delays at the hands of the Covid pandemic, which would have seen thousands of Help to Buy aided sales fail to meet the previous deadline of 31st March.

In a further announcement, from April 2021, the government will provide a guarantee to lenders who offer mortgages to people with a deposit of just 5% on homes. Available on houses with a value of up to £600,000, the fact that homebuyers can borrow 95% of the house price from the bank may help to make home ownership more achievable for first-time buyers.

Our award-winning residential conveyancing team can advise you regardless of where you are up to with your property sale or purchase. If you have already commenced the conveyancing process with another firm but do not feel the transaction is progressing, we may be able to take over.

Contact Claire Egerton to discuss your circumstances or to obtain a competitive quote for our conveyancing services.

Claire Egerton is Head of Residential Property at O’Donnell Solicitors.

For any further advice, please contact Claire on 01457 761320 or email  claire.egerton@odonnellsolicitors.co.uk.