Comments : The holiday is nearly over . . .
The stamp duty holiday for first time buyers which was introduced by the labour government in March 2010 ends on 24th March this year. Several Estate Agents have reported seeing a significant spurt of activity from first time buyers however first time buyers have been warned to act now if they want to complete in time. Purchases have to complete before midnight when the exemption ends or the tax will revert back to previous rates and first-time buyers will be liable for the charge.
As the scheme is drawing to an end the Government have said it proved ‘ineffective’ in increasing numbers of first-time buyers. From 25th March, first-time buyers will revert to paying Stamp Duty at 1% for properties between £125,000 and £250,000.
Wendy Evans Scott, president of the NAEA, says: “First-time buyers are key to a healthy property market. We hope to see the number of people completing the purchase of their first home continuing to increase through February and March, as many first-time buyers are keen to purchase their first home before the tax exemption deadline. However, it is impossible to predict what impact the end of the tax exemption will have on first-time buyers, particularly those on very tight budgets of under £250,000 for whom the 1% tax could be disastrous. The government will need to monitor sales closely and consider other action to support the fragile first-time buyer market.”
Only time will tell what impact, if any, the end of the tax exemption will bring to the property market but one thing’s for sure; the holiday blues will be kicking in earlier this year for first time buyers.
How do you think the housing market will be affected once stamp duty returns?
Jo Milne, Marketing Director, Pali Ltd
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