The scale of the problems facing many prospective buyers has been set out in a survey showing as many as one-third have been denied a mortgage.
On 1,262 existing owners questioned by a financial services company, 32 per cent have at some point been denied a mortgage while 45 per cent have at some point been gazumped while attempting to buy.
Of those attempting to purchase a home in 2020, 45 per cent have encountered significant delays or complications in their attempts to secure mortgages.
Some 36 per cent of those planning to buy a property in the next year are likely to consider alternative finance options like bridging loans.
Paresh Raja, chief executive of the MFS firm that commissioned the survey, says: “The stamp duty holiday has already had a positive effect on the UK property market, sparking much more activity among buyers and sellers. However, today’s research shows that many prospective homebuyers are unable to take advantage of this initiative."
“Frustratingly, this is often due to the challenges of securing a mortgage, which are beyond buyers’ control. Many banks are treading carefully and, as a result, applications are taking longer to process and there is a higher chance of an application being rejected. This is putting property chains at risk of collapsing.
“At this point in time, it is important that lenders keep lending – they must ensure buyers have access to the finance needed to complete on a purchase. Failing this, the stamp duty holiday will only have a limited effect.”