Homebuyers beware!

The rising cost of mortgages that has been squeezing many homebuyers and in particular first time buyers, out of the property market is now beginning to include lower loan-to-value mortgages. Mortgage rates across the largest high street lenders at all loan to values are now rising as banks struggle with a surge in new business sparked by homebuyers seeking to finalise deals ahead of the end of the stamp duty holiday. Hina Bhudia of Knight Frank Finance tells the FT that anybody with a rate secured with a lender “should lock it in at the earliest opportunity because there is no guarantee it is going to be there tomorrow.” The fact is that there is much uncertainty in the market currently and no-one can predict how this will all pan out so this is excellent advice. 

The surge in house buying shows little sign of abating. Exchanges in the property market outside of London reached an all-time high in the second week of October and there are signs of strain in various parts of the conveyancing system. Once an offer is accepted, it takes on average just over two months before exchange is reached, according to analysis by Tom Bill. The whole process, from the sale instruction to completion, takes on average six months. With the stamp duty holiday ending at the end of March and a 2% surcharge for overseas buyers in place from April, pressure on the system is likely to increase. Tom speaks to Mark Hayward, chief executive of NAEA Propertymark, about what it all means for the market. 

This is all very disturbing news as if you have just agreed a price on a house today thinking you have had a result, as it is unlikely you will benefit from the stamp duty holiday before you complete on the deal, making the property thousands of £’s more expensive! The result is that more pressure will be placed on Solicitors to speed up the conveyancing process when they have no capacity to do so as many are operating on reduced staff or they are working from home.

So if you are looking to sell and you feel you may be affected by this issue then give us a call, we will give you a fair price for a fast sale.

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