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Rise in Property Transactions Will Not End When Stamp Duty Deadline Passes

Conveyancers See Rise In Enquiries For Properties Over Stamp Duty Relief Threshold


A leading conveyancer says recent improvements in the housing market should continue beyond the expected rush for first time buyers to complete property deals ahead of the stamp duty holiday deadline.

Lisa Gibbs, a Partner in the Conveyancing team at Irwin Mitchell, says that the law firm has seen an increase in instructions for people buying houses above the stamp duty tax relief threshold of £250k as well as a general 15 per cent uplift in all instructions on this time last year.

Designed to encourage more people to enter the market, the Government introduced a ‘holiday period’ on paying stamp duty for first-time buyers on any property worth between £125,000 and £250,000 up to 25 March 2012. Anyone purchasing a property within this value range after this date will have to pay the tax – which currently stands at a rate of 1 per cent of a home’s value.

Lisa Gibbs, who guides both first-time and other property buyers through the process of buying and selling a home, said: “The recent increase in instruction levels at Irwin Mitchell are indicative of wider confidence in the market, and appears to suggest that it is not just first time buyers trying to get in ahead of the stamp duty holiday ending.

“Overall our instructions for February 2012 were up by 15 per cent compared to last February and on the evidence we have seen we do not anticipate the rising level of instructions to drop off after the stamp duty holiday deadline passes.

“We are seeing plenty of new instructions above the stamp duty threshold of £250k..

“This indicates that there will be continued stronger levels of property transactions at a higher value over the next few months regardless of what happens with the stamp duty threshold.”