Published: 01/10/2020If you want to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday, you may think that you have plenty of time to sell your property before the 31 March 2021 deadline.
The average time it takes to complete on a property once an offer is accepted is 12 weeks. This doesn't leave too long before the end of March 2021. Even more so when you consider that figure doesn’t include time for your own property search.
According to data from ViewMyChain.com, receiving an offer once the property is on the market can take around ten weeks, your buyer arranging a solicitor can take well over a month and arranging their mortgage can take up to six weeks, and that’s just a few of the tasks the buyer has to tick off. The solicitors, surveyors and estate agent will also all have their own tasks to complete before the job is done. When all combined, the average time it takes to sell a property from going on the market to completion is six months. With this in mind, you should give yourself plenty of time to sell your property so that you have the best possible chance to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday.
What is the Stamp Duty Holiday?
When you buy a property, you normally have to pay Stamp Duty Land Transaction Tax on all properties over £125,000, or £300,000 for first-time buyers.
On 8 July 2020, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced a temporary stamp duty holiday that cut the rate of stamp duty to zero per cent for all properties £500,000 or under until 31 March 2021.
For example, if you are purchasing a property that is £400,000 as a main residence, before the stamp duty holiday you would have paid £10,000, now you pay £0. There has also been a cut for buyers of additional properties, for example buy-to-let investors.
The new rate for additional properties starts at three per cent up to £500,000, which, using the same example of a £400,000 property, would save the buyer £10,000 in stamp duty.
You will also need to assemble copies of some important documents, including:
- A copy of the lease (if the property is leasehold)
- Documentation related to the freehold (if the property is freehold)
- FENSA certificates for replacement windows
- Your Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) R
- elevant building restrictions
- Building regulation certificate when alterations have taken place
- A Gas Safety certificate for a new boiler