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I'm thinking a big factor in the magnitude and direction of price changes in the next few months (given that a larger than usual number of people will be unable or unwilling to sell/buy at the moment) is the number of forced sellers vs the number of potential buyers actually willing and able to buy.

Normally, the motivated sales are led by the three 'D's - "deaths, divorces and destitution".

However, in the UK there's a fourth - and with a big cost clock running: Duty. Specifically second home stamp duty.

There's an article in the Telegraph that a couple built a £1.3 house, the ownership of which overlapped with that of their London flat. They have a grace period (3 years) in which to sell one of the houses to escape a £40,000 2nd home tax bill... which runs out soon. They had previously found a buyer for their flat for £500k (down from asking price of £550k) but they pulled out when the buyer dropped their offer by another £50k.

Apparently small developers are also likely to have the same problem as they buy/renovate/sell in an even smaller window before the 2nd home tax kicks in.


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