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What does lockdown number 3 mean for the Property Market?

On Monday 4th January 2021, PM Boris Johnson announced that England was to enter lockdown (our 3rd lockdown since March 2020). The conditions of lockdown being that we must all limit, or completely avoid, time spent outside the home. This is due to take place until mid-Feb due to the COVID19 variant which has now surpassed the previous peak in Spring last year.

The first lockdown meant that both estate and letting agents were forced to lockdown their services for 7 weeks between March and May 2020. This included tradespeople, such as builders or decorators at that time. However, since 12th May 2020, housing market activity has resumed due to the Government’s belief in the importance of the sector. Rishi Sunak, Chancellor of the Exchequer, also announced a stamp duty holiday up to £500,000, providing a tax break of up to £15k to tens of thousands of home buyers. This has led to a severe backlog in processing sales with fears that thousands of sales will fail to complete before the stamp duty holiday deadline on March 31. However, as soon as those restrictions were lifted, home sales and moves boomed.

This time however, things are not that much different. House moves, are an exception and will still be permitted throughout this lockdown. Government guidelines advise that people are still able to move home. This also means estate and letting agents (such as ourselves) are able to continue working with property viewings still allowed to go on. We continue to prioritise the health and safety of our colleagues and clients whilst seeking to help many let out their properties and move into their new homes safely. This means conducting less “back to back” viewings, cleaning keys thoroughly before handback, making available the option to view properties online and so much more.

For more information regarding how to navigate moving homes, letting out your property, selling your home or buying a home please refer to: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-advice-on-home-moving-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak#advice-to-industry