One Month To Go

There is one month to go until the change in the stamp duty rates for second property purchases. The new rules come in on 1 April (and not 6th April like the new tax year as some people may be thinking) and anyone buying a second property on or after this date will have to pay an extra 3% on the purchase price if they already own a property.

Some clarification of the finer points of the rules is yet to be announced as these will likely form part of the Budget statement in a couple of weeks time, now that the consultation period is at an end and the government can decide on some of the more complicated scenarios involved and whether people should have to pay the extra stamp duty in certain situations.

So it is really at the crunch point if you are looking for a property to complete on before the rules change. There are some auctions happening in the next few days around the country that anticipate completion before the cut off date (as buyers are usually given 28 days to complete on auction properties) so if you are still looking for a property and want to avoid the extra tax then this may be your last chance.

Also you need to watch out in case you are buying a new property to live in but your sale falls through and you continue with your purchase – in this case, as you will still own 2 properties at the end of the day on completion of the purchase of the new house, you will need to come up with the extra 3% cash for the stamp duty, even though if you sell your original property within 18 months, you can reclaim that money.

There is also rumoured to be a likelihood of the possibility of a bottleneck on 31st March where some properties may slip through the net and do not get to complete before the cut off date. It may be worth checking with your solicitor and mortgage provider that as much is being done as possible before the 1 April deadline. Finding yourself with a large bill at the last minute would be a very unlucky scenario for buyers.

One Month To Go

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