Clock is ticking on stamp duty holiday as home buyers 'relieved' by extension
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Home buyers have breathed a sigh of relief after the stamp duty holiday was extended by the chancellor, estate agents have said.
A total of 32,500 East of England home buyers, who have already agreed on a sale, according to property expert Zoopla, are set to benefit from £178m in tax savings thanks to the extension.
Grainne Gilmore, head of research at Zoopla, said: “We estimate that a further 280,000 buyers active in the market up to the end of May will benefit from savings of up to £2,500 as a result of the chancellor's ‘tapered’ extension, as long as they complete their purchase by the end of September."
The tax holiday has already had an effect on the property market with estate agent Savills now predicting 5% growth in the East of England.
Tom Orford, head of residential at Savills in Ipswich, said: “Our agreed sales in Babergh, Mid Suffolk and East Suffolk for the first eight weeks of this year for example were 12% higher when compared to the same period in 2020, which itself was 26% higher than the year before.
"That said, there is no doubt that the extension of the stamp duty holiday will help to further support the market.
“In the immediate future it will come as a huge relief to those buyers who are already in the process of moving house, however it will also benefit new buyers who are in a position to act quickly.
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“Registered buyers are up 32 per cent year on year and 55 per cent of our sales received multiple bids.
"Areas along the coast that you would expect such as Southwold, Walberswick, Thorpeness, Aldeburgh and Orford continue to be popular as does Woodbridge and the villages along the River Deben, however, we have also seen a lot of activity further inland at the likes of Hintlesham, Nayland and East Bergholt.”
John Palmer, managing director at Palmer Partners, added that firms like his are "even busier" but banks and solicitors are "holding up the process" as they are working from home or have been furloughed.
"So the news that the stamp duty is extended is very welcome as sales agreed as far back as November could have still missed the deadline which was very stressful for buyers sellers and the solicitors involved," Mr Palmer said.
"The news of government-backed 95% loans to help first-time buyers has added even more interest to the market."