Posted on 20th February 2012

Stamp Duty Holiday for First Time Buyers is Coming to an End

Martin Williamson, Head of Residential PropertyProperty law specialists at Latimer Hinks Solicitors are advising first time buyers looking to purchase a property that the stamp duty holiday comes to an end in March.

March 25th, 2012 will see the stamp duty holiday threshold decrease from £250,000 for first time buyers to £125,000.

The scheme was introduced by the government in March 2010 to stimulate the housing market by removing the 1% stamp duty tax for first time buyers purchasing properties between £125,000 and £250,000.

The current government have reversed the scheme as they feel that it has not had the desired effect and not seen the first time buyers flocking to the market as had been anticipated. The difficult market for first time buyers has been compounded by the lack of mortgage availability and requirement for larger deposits.

Martin Williamson, head of residential property at Latimer Hinks Solicitors, said: "First time buyers need to be aware of these changes and if they are currently waiting to complete a purchase they must ensure that they have good lines of communication with their solicitor and that others in the chain are aware of the necessity to complete prior to March 25.

"Sellers and buyers alike need to be aware that this is happening, because it could mean a difference of thousands of pounds or even between selling and not selling a home.

"However, this does not mean buyers should fail to take the normal care they would employ in searching for the right house and getting the right price, just to take advantage of this Stamp Duty holiday. This is still the biggest investment most people make in their lives and it is too important to rush and get wrong.

Latimer Hinks Solicitors property team provides expert legal advice to buyers and sellers, and can be contacted in 01325 341500.