Following Boris Johnson’s announcement of a second national lockdown until 2 December, the Ministry of Housing confirmed that the housing market is to remain open. In a tweet on Saturday, 31 October, Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick stated: “Yes – the housing market will remain open throughout this period. Everyone should continue to play their part in reducing the spread of the virus by following the current guidance.” The news presents welcome relief to the thousands of house hunters who are eager to find a property and move house ahead of the stamp duty deadline next year.
Referring to the government’s guidelines, Jenrick emphasises that property buyers are advised that all initial viewings should be done virtually wherever possible. All physical viewings, where prospective buyers or renters will be entering the property, should involve no more than two households inside the property at any one time.
I fully support the government’s decision to keep the housing market open; house hunters are already facing nerve-racking delays when attempting to meet the stamp duty deadline. Mortgage lenders, surveyors, and local councils are struggling to cope with the backlog of property transactions. It’s good that we’ve been able to avoid the destructive impact a second standstill of the housing market would have had on property buyers, as well as on the construction sector.
Having witnessed the demand from property buyers first hand; and as England is now being forced to endure a second lockdown, we would like the government to re-consider an extension of the stamp duty holiday or a reform of the stamp duty system. Not only would this ease off the pressure on house hunters, but it would also allow mortgage lenders and surveyors to catch up with the backlog caused by the first lockdown.
In line with Government guidelines, at MELT Homes we are still pushing on with the launch of the Lime Grove show home, a stunning new development in Tuffley, Gloucestershire. Interested property buyers can carry out a virtual viewing of the 19 new homes, which consist of seven apartments and 12 family houses. With prices starting from £210,000, all of the homes benefit from the stamp duty holiday and can be purchased using Help to Buy.
Alternatively, house hunters are invited to schedule an appointment to visit the newly opened show home, where safety measures such as hand sanitiser and facemasks are in place. To book your time slot, please contact MELT’s friendly team on 01452 346 174, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.limegrovegloucester.co.uk