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Residential property professionals more concerned about Stamp Duty than COVID-19

Residential conveyancers and estate agents both anticipate the Stamp Duty holiday extension verdict to have a significantly greater impact on their role in 2021 than either the COVID-19 vaccination programme or Brexit – according to the findings of the ‘Thriving in a Pandemic’ report published by tmgroup and mio earlier this month. The survey of over 600 property professionals also revealed anxiety around an increased number of broken chains and fall-throughs this year.

These concerns were echoed in the verbatim comments captured within the survey, including:

  • “Without an extension of the Stamp duty holiday or a revision of the rates, the pressure on conveyancers will continue. I worry how much the conveyancers can deal with.” (Residential Conveyancer)
  • “If the March deadline is not extended, I would imagine we’ll see a higher fall through rate. I have spoken with a fair few clients who are only moving to take advantage of the freeze on SDLT.” (Estate Agent)
  • “If the Stamp Duty holiday is not extended or eased properly then it’s going to fall off a cliff.” (Estate Agent)

The Spring Budget announcement will bring some certainty to the market

The good news is that the Spring Budget announcement is just around the corner, which will bring some much-needed certainty to the situation – if nothing else, which will also allow business leaders to pause, take stock and continue the year with a renewed focus on achieving their business priorities for 2021 – including business growth, better use of technology, integration and digitisation, as Joe Pepper CEO at tmgroup commented: 

“It’s fair to say that the industry has been somewhat distracted by the unusually high volumes of property transactions coming through the pipeline, as well as the uncertainty (and potentially false hope) around the Stamp Duty holiday extension, which remains a critical concern in residential property. However, with the Chancellor set to announce the Spring Budget on 3rd March, there’s not much longer to wait until the industry either welcomes an extension of sorts, or battens down the hatches to cope with the final charge towards the Stamp Duty deadline. Whatever happens, for many in the property industry, I’m sure the 31st March can’t come soon enough.”

Want to find out more? The ‘Thriving in a Pandemic’ report is available to download now

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