London-based Auction House says the new stamp duty surcharge rules will encourage more sellers to use auctioneers.
The additional homes three per cent duty surcharge introduced this month applies to anyone with two homes even if this is because they are in the process of selling their main property and buy another.
Sellers can claim a refund on the additional duty if they sell the original property within 36 months.
This is “a punishing blow” for those following the traditional estate agency route to market, according to Auction House London auctioneer Andrew Binstock.
“The hike in stamp duty will kick-in as soon as anyone owns more than one property. This will include people who are still trying to sell their existing home, but buy their new home in order not to lose it. In effect, they will be treated like any other second- home owner or buy to let investor” he claims.
“Previously, people were willing to own two homes simultaneously for a short time, if it prevented the chain in which they were involved from falling apart. The danger is, of course, that if their original home is still on the market after three years, they won’t be able to recover the extra duty. As a result, more sellers are likely to choose the speed and certainty of auction instead.”