Estate agents see surge as buyers race to beat stamp duty deadline

Ryan Fowler

December 16, 2020

The number of prospective buyers increased by 29% in November as prospective buyers raced to beat the stamp duty holiday deadline, data from NAEA Propertymark shows. 

In November, the average number of prospective buyers registered per estate agent branch reached 580 up from 451 in October. This is the highest number recorded since August 2004, when there were 582 buyers on estate agents’ books and the highest number since records began for the month of November.

The average number of sales agreed per estate agent branch stood at 13 in November, a small increase from 12 in October. This is the highest figure recorded for the month of November since 2002, when the number also stood at 13. Year-on-year, the average number of sales agreed per branch has increased by 86%.

Mark Hayward, chief policy adviser at Propertymark, said: “The pressure of completing a house purchase ahead of the stamp duty, LTT and LBTT holiday deadlines means we have seen an extremely high number of potential buyers flood the market in November, in the hope of finding their dream home.

“We remain very concerned about the impact of the stamp duty, LTT and LBTT cliff edges on the 3t March, with nearly three in five (56%) estate agents expecting to see an increase in failed sales next year due to buyers realising their sale will not complete ahead of the deadline.”

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