How often have you thought about retiring to the coast? Buying a dream property in the country or even buying your first home? Or adding to your family bolt holes with their future inheritance in mind? Well, the good news is, you could do it sooner than you planned. Because it’s not too late to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday, which has been extended until 30th June - and there are further benefits available after that date.

It’s fair to say, we are all getting slightly fed up now of hearing about the Pandemic, especially as we are finally seeing ‘green shoots’ appearing all around us. But one thing the past year or so has done for us is make us think more about what is important in life now. Not waiting until the time is right, or until we retire, or until we have everything lined up perfectly.

And it could be perfect timing, not only with the temporary stamp duty holiday, but also with the recent introduction of the Government Mortgage Guarantee Scheme (MGS), with the Treasury agreeing to reimburse a portion of any losses the lenders experience in the case of a repossession.

During the early stages of lockdown, mortgage lenders battened down the hatches and reduced the number of low-deposit mortgage products available. In September 2020, only 44 mortgage products were available for those who were able to offer 10% deposit. It reduced the risks within the economy but made things difficult for any home buyers. Especially so for first-time buyers. But the MGS has increased the volume of low-deposit mortgages once again, so with access to over 150 products, you may just get your property dreams back on track.

Simpson Financial Services has been providing independent mortgage advice and guidance for over 20 years now. We can honestly say, now is as good a time as any to be packing up and moving on out.

How COVID has changed our lifestyle choices

We are not the only business seeing a huge change in how and where our clients want to live. Demand has increased for space – whether that be additional space inside our homes, or just the sense of space around us. According to Rightmove, London has been overtaken in the most searched location for buyers. Moving to the countryside and southern coastal areas is clearly more appealing than the big cities, with six out of the top 10 buyer-searched locations being in Devon, Dorset, and Cornwall.

Some city businesses are preparing to bring their staff back in to the office, and there is a small increase in city home purchases. But, for many, the acceptance that home working is likely to remain a more viable option now means they are no longer tied to town or city life.

Improved transport links to cities and towns will still allow for face-to-face meetings when we are comfortably through the next step on the roadmap to recovery. And with developments in technology and broadband services even in the ‘middle of nowhere’, all this combined means that these properties, once only distant dreams, are now becoming a distinct possibility.

Where young couples, or those starting over again after divorce, separation, or bereavement, may have accepted their only options were renting a small flat, apartment or 1-bedroomed house, they now have the possibility of starting afresh in a larger home with a garden and even a garage! Something that was highly likely to be off their radar only a few months ago, when the Office of National Statistics (ONS) revealed house prices were rising at the highest rates since 2014.

So, despite the negatives, the virus has also provided for many a much needed and welcome opportunity. In theory, you can still benefit from the stamp duty holiday until the end of September, as the threshold will remain at the reduced level of £250,000. From October 2021 the £125,000 limit will revert to normal. First-time buyers are slightly different though – they are exempt from stamp duty on the first £300,000 of a property purchase once the rules revert on 1st July.

All of this can be made much easier for you to manage with professional independent financial advice.

How Simpson Financial Services can help you enjoy the stamp duty holiday

I referred to the 5% deposit mortgage products earlier. But, as Martin Lewis (Money Saving Expert) acknowledged, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you should apply for one of those straight away or rely on it as only option. In fact, if you can offer a higher deposit than these 95% LTV mortgages require, you will have more choice across the marketplace.

Here at Simpson Financial Services, because we are totally independent and not tied to specific lenders, we have access to every mortgage product available. First-time buyer or other, we can find the product that best suits your circumstances, and if we start working together now, the stamp duty holiday deadline need not cause us any problems.   

We will not rush you through the process, though, and we may find an alternative to one of the 95% LTV mortgages if we get a full breakdown of your finances and can find a more appropriate offer. We will still take our time to thoroughly understand your current situation, your financial plans, and goals for the near future and years to come.

Our Independent Financial Advisers are the experts in finding solutions to all your financial needs, so, whatever you are looking for - retirement planning, savings and investments, insurances, or mortgages - Simpson Financial Services will be with you every step of the way. Although we know all good things must come to an end, even when the stamp duty holiday is over, we will still be here for you. Contact one of our team to get those discussions underway and let us help you move to your dream home or live the life you have always wanted.