Moving home and COVID-19

I am writing this just as our Prime Minister Boris Johnson tells us that 6 is the maximum we can have at a gathering in our homes or in our gardens and the 6 must be from no more than 2 separate households. What about my Christmas day lunch I immediately thought when traditionally I have a gathering with my extended family who do not live locally and my neighbours. We have spent Christmas together nearly every year for the last 10 years. A selfish thought I know when there are others with far more serious problems. It will all have changed by Christmas day anyway so no point worrying about it now.
In the meantime the housing market gathers pace. Home owners who were putting off a move for 1 or 2 years are now taking advantage of the stamp duty saving and moving immediately. If purchasing a home at £500,000 then this can save you £15,000 in stamp duty. This enables purchasers to obtain a more valuable home for their money than they would have otherwise been able to purchase.
HM Land Registry records show that in the 2nd quarter of 2020 completed transactions registered in England and Wales were down by 65% from the 1st quarter.. The 2nd quarter was the first time on record that quarterly transactions fell below 100,000. April 2020 saw just 440 transactions registered – less than 1% of the 55,000 total in March. In May 2020 there were 25,459 registrations and more than double that in June. This increased work load was very noticeable at legal firms including Dixon Stewart. Many were still working with reduced staff or staff working from home and it was a struggle to manage home movers expectations and deal with the work. Estate agents were selling homes as soon as they came on the market and were finding it difficult to keep up with their paperwork.
HM Land Registry records show that the number of active legal firms fell to an all time low of 317 in April 2020 rising to 3,735 in June. This is still less than the number of firms operating in the 1st quarter of 2020.
Legal firms are adapting to new digital ways of working in order to maintain activity. I have not been able to manage working from home. I struggled to get to grips with a laptop and much prefer sitting in my office with my computer and my paper files. I feel proud of myself though that I managed some zoom and team meetings on line. I realise however that working life may never be the same again. This is evidenced by my daughter starting her 1st graduate job from the dining room table at home. Being in her 20’s I am sure she will cope far better than me.
If you do require any assistance with a home move then please do call us we are very happy to help.

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