Stamp Duty Land Tax

We are sure that you will be aware of the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) “holiday” in place at the moment and which (unless it is extended) is due to end on 30th September 2021.  While not all transactions will be affected by the end of this holiday, many will be, and in some cases the additional tax payable will be significant.   Even if your purchase will not be materially affected by the end of the holiday (perhaps because there is little or no increase in the amount of tax payable, or because you can fund any increase) if you are involved in a property chain it could impact on others in the chain which in turn could impact on you.

Further information may be available at HMRC’s online calculator 

If completion does not take place until after 30th September 2021, and there is an increase in the tax payable, you must be able to fund that additional payment.  If you cannot do so, then you will not be able to complete the purchase, as the tax has to be paid in order for you to be able to be registered as the owner of the property after completion.   You must therefore ensure that you will be able to raise any additional money required to meet any extra tax due.

While we will of course do what we can to ensure that you complete your purchase on your preferred date, we have to warn you that we cannot offer you any guarantee as to when completion will take place.  There are many factors in a conveyancing transaction that are outside your control and ours.  Examples include:

  • how quickly property search results can be obtained
  • whether there is anything untoward with the title to the property, the search results, or the information provided by the seller
  • how quickly mortgage offers can be issued
  • what special conditions may be imposed in mortgages and whether and how quickly they can be complied with
  • how much notice lenders require to release mortgage funds
  • how long the chain is
  • how quickly other parties in the chain can deal with matters
  • the availability of removal companies to enable people to physically move

The market is much busier than normal because of the SDLT holiday, and the situation is  only compounded by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown.  The purpose of this information is not to alarm you unnecessarily, but is to ensure that you are fully aware of the situation, and any additional tax which may be due if completion cannot take place by 30th September 2021.