New build homebuyers are, by and large, still able to exchange their homes during the coronavirus pandemic.

RECENT research has revealed that 83% of the country’s leading home developers would consider part-exchanging their units.

Property Solvers contacted the following 12 housebuilders: Barratt Homes, Persimmon, Taylor Wimpey, Bellway, Redrow, Keepmoat, Bovis, Bloor Homes, Miller, Countryside, Linden and Crest.

Only 2 said that they were currently not offering part-exchange schemes.

However, Ruban Selvanayagam, co-founder of the home selling firm highlighted a few caveats to bear in mind: “most of the developers we spoke to indicated that they do not offer part-exchange on all of their schemes.  Much will depend on your own situation and selling position.”

He added: “Each case would be judged on its individual merits.  You may, for example, struggle to part exchange if you have a leasehold property with a relatively short term remaining.” 

“Housebuilders may only engage in certain areas where they know that they’ll be able to sell quickly. Others will only offer part exchange when their projects have reached a certain stage (usually coming up to or post conclusion).”

Selvanayagam (author of the extensive guide on part exchange house schemes) goes on to comment that: “if you find a developer willing to partake in part exchange, with the stamp duty holiday and historically low interest rates, swapping your existing home for a new build property can make a lot of sense.” 

“Not only would you effectively eliminate estate agency fees, but also avoid many of the hassles that come with an open market sale.”

“The downsides, however, are that you’ll typically have to accept around 90% of your current property’s value.”

As a result, he concluded, rather than committing to part-exchanging, some developers are incentivising sellers to buy their units by offering them free estate agency services of their existing homes.  This would be on the basis that they would commit to buying the new build home and sellers may have to cover the fees themselves if they pull out.

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