Rob Barnard, Director of Intermediaries at Masthaven, comments on the decision to extend the Stamp Duty holiday until June:
“Today’s confirmation that the Stamp Duty holiday will be extended to June will come as a relief to many borrowers. The fast-approaching March deadline had created a bottleneck as many buyers rushed to complete purchases, resulting in nail-biting delays.
“The original purpose of the tax holiday was to stimulate activity in the market, which had been hit hard by a total shutdown and uncertainty at the start of the pandemic. Clearly, the policy has certainly done what it set out to do and the property market has been a key part of the UK’s economic recovery from the shock it received last year. This extension will continue to fuel activity in the market and help compensate for any reduced activity caused by lockdown restrictions or economic uncertainty.
“The pandemic isn’t over, however, and it’s vital that even post-June, when normal life begins to slowly resume, that the government continues to support borrowers. The fallout of this pandemic will be felt for years to come and after the end of the Stamp Duty holiday we may begin to see its true effect on the property market. Covid has affected the financial circumstances of almost everyone in the UK, so the government, lenders and mortgage brokers will need to work together to ensure borrowers have access to the financial options that are right for them.”