Commenting on the UK monthly property transactions figures, Jonathan Sealey CEO of specialist short term lender Hope Capital, said: “Traditionally December would see a slowdown in activity in the housing market on the run up to Christmas, but as with everything else in 2020 last month was not a normal December.
“In fact, the stats show it was the busiest December for ten years and activity up by a third (34%) on December 2019, demonstrating that the stamp duty holiday continues to be a strong driver for would-be purchasers.
“With house prices hitting record highs at the moment and demand carrying from December into 2021, it’s vital the message goes out to house buyers that meeting the stamp duty deadline is looking less and less likely, if you haven’t started the purchase process.
“More than ever brokers and lenders have to work together and be creative in their approach to ensure they can get deals over the line in time for March 31.
“Realistically, specialist finance looks to be the best route of hitting that deadline with just a few weeks to go, unless the Government takes action now to extend or soften that deadline.”