Estate agents have been complaining to newspapers and taking to social media over the weekend about the increased time it is taking for sales to get to completion and the slow conveyancing system.
This follows estimates from both the Conveyancing Association (CA) and NAEA Propertymark that on average vendors will need to get their properties on the market by the 25th or 26th of this month to achieve a completion before the stamp duty holiday deadline of 31st March next year.
GetAgent says these cut off dates vary from region to region, though. Its data suggests that some regions, where demand is perhaps more subdued than others, vendors can wait until as late as November 6th in the Midlands to begin marketing their properties.
“We recommend that sellers should begin marketing no later than 26th September in order to meet the stamp duty holiday deadline of 31st March,” says Mark Hayward, Chief Executive of NAEA.
The CA has described this date as ‘shocking’, telling The Sunday Times:” The selling process has speeded up, but the time to complete is the same, if not longer, because of a lack of capacity, backlog and other problems.”
And latest sales data from TwencyCI shows that the average time from offers accepted to exchange of contracts is now 125 days, up from 107 days a year ago.
Marc von Grundherr of central London agency Benham & Reeves, adds: “It is incredibly frustrating. At the moment you are lucky to get a sale through in six months from the offer being agreed to completion.”
Manchester agent Maurice Kilbride (left) took to Twitter to urge vendors to ‘get a wiggle on…given the increased time it is taking to get house sales to completion’, describing the average time of 19 weeks from sale to completion as ‘ridiculous’.