Buyers and sellers urged not to move or hold viewings, as mortgage offers are extended
The government has put the brakes on the housing market until the coronavirus restrictions are over, telling people to delay their home moves if possible and not to allow new viewings.
In new guidance, the government said it was urging buyers and sellers to adapt and be flexible by agreeing new moving dates. It said there was no need to pull out of transactions but both parties should try to agree a new date unless the property is empty. Where the property is currently occupied, we encourage all parties to do all they can to amicably agree alternative dates to move, for a time when it is likely that stay-at-home measures against coronavirus will no longer be in place, the guidance said.
It said banks have agreed that mortgage offers should be extended where delay to completions takes place. For those looking to sell, it said there “should be no visitors to your home” for viewings or valuations although people are allowed to speak to estate agents over the phone and conduct virtual viewings. Renters have also been advised not to move by the government, which also banned any evictions for the next three months from Friday in England and Wales.
Robert Jenrick, the housing secretary, said the courts will suspend all ongoing housing possession action for private and social tenants as well as homeowners facing action from mortgage holders.