BRITAIN could have no homes left on the market in just two months as the Covid crisis sends the market into a frenzy.
Experts have warned that Brits looking for a new home may have a “problem” finding one, as homes for sale are rapidly running out.
Homes for sale are rapidly running out across the UKCredit: Getty
The shortage, which was reported in The Sunday Times, is widespread across the country.
There are less than two months’ worth of homes left to buy across almost a fifth of the UK, according to property data analysts TwentyCi.
Some areas have even less homes than this, such as the Norwich suburbs of New Costessey and Bowthorpe, which have just 1.1 months of homes left to sell.
TwentyCi warned that the shortage is like “walking into the supermarket and finding the shelves are not fully stocked and, in some cases, practically empty”.
Experts warned that the Chancellor’s stamp duty holiday has created a surge in Brits looking for a new home.
But Covid has meant less homes are being put up for sale.
Because of the shortage, estate agents have reported that homes are being sold in a matter of days.
Stamp duty has been scrapped on properties up to £500,000 since July last year in an attempt to boost the housing market.
The move came as property prices fell for the first time in eight years and the housing market stalled as a result of the first lockdown.
What is stamp duty?
STAMP duty land tax (SDLT) is a lump sum payment anyone buying a property or piece of land over a certain price has to pay.
Up until July 8 2020, most house-buyers in England and Northern Ireland had to pay stamp duty on properties over £125,000.
This was temporarily increased to £500,000 until March 31, 2021 in the government’s mini-Budget in July 2020.
The Chancellor extended the help until September 2021 in his Spring Budget.
The holiday has now been reduced to £250,000 as of the beginning of July 2021.
The rate a buyer has to fork out varies depending on the price and type of property.
Rates are different depending on whether it is residential, a second home or buy-to-let, or whether you’re a first-time buyer.
The usual system in England for residential properties means:
- First-time buyers pay nothing on properties below £300,000 (and relief available on properties of up to £500,000)
- You pay nothing if the property costs below £125,000
- You pay 2% if it is worth between £125,001 and £250,000
- You pay 5% if between £250,001 and up to £925,000
- You pay 10% if it is between £925,001 and £1.5million
- You pay 12% on anything over £1.5million
For second homes or buy to let properties:
- 3% on purchases up to 125,000
- 5% on purchases between £125,001 and £250,000
- 8% on purchases above £250,001 and £925,000
- 13% on purchases above £925,001 and £1.5 million
- 15% on purchases above £1.5 million
It was due to come to an end at the end of last month, but Rishi Sunak announced it would be extended by three months until June 30, 2021.
From July, the tax-free threshold will drop for home buyers to £250,000 until September.
It’ll then return to its normal limit at £125,000 from October.
Mr Sunak faced calls to extend the deadline after many people were scrambling to complete their transactions before the deadline to avoid a hefty tax bill.
House prices have also been climbing over this year, according to property website Zoopla.
It said house prices have climbed by 0.3% in January – 12.4% above the same point last year – and the average UK house price now stands at £305,397.
However, Zoopla revealed that you can get a house from just over £59,000 in some parts of the UK.
Here’s how you can get on the property ladder with just a 5% deposit by using the new Help to Buy equity loan.
Alternatively, the government is launching a mortgage guarantee scheme for buyers with the same-sized deposits.
Check out our guide to buying your first home, including how much you can borrow and the help available.