Rightmove reported this week that National sales agreed are up 50% on October last year, and they now estimate’s 650,000 sales are currently going through the buying and selling process, 67% more than at the same time in 2019. They went on to say that in the West Midlands the average asking price currently is £243,507, which represents an annual increase of 7.3% over the last 12 months. From the point of instruction to agreeing a sale, the average time is 47 days which is the shortest period in the country.


This is all positive news, but the time between agreeing a sale and completing contracts is taking longer and longer. As estate agents, we are doing all we can to help our clients, but it is a very frustrating process at the moment.


If you want to take advantage of the current stamp duty exemption, we offer the following advice.


  1. Before you view any properties, speak to a Financial Adviser and obtain an Agreement in Principle.
  2. When you have found a new home, and your offer has been accepted, apply for your mortgage immediately and check that your preferred lender's turnaround times will work with your timescales.
  3. Instruct a solicitor/conveyancer within a matter of days and advise them that you want to take advantage of the stamp duty exemption.
  4. Return all the paperwork that you receive from your solicitor/conveyancer in a timely fashion.
  5. Keep in contact with the Estate Agent who has sold the property; they are there to help you!
  6. Finally, do everything you can to find a home to buy in 2020.
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