The Institute of Fiscal Studies has warned that there may be a stampede of people rushing to purchase buy-to-let properties before the 3% hike in stamp duty kicks in next April.

The IFS has said the increase is "disproportionate" and will depress the property market as landlords try to pass on the costs to tenants by charging higher rent.

From 1 April 2016, second homes and buy-to-let properties will incur an extra 3% stamp duty. For property sales which exchange on or after 26 November 2015 where completion takes places on or after 1 April 2016 the new higher rates apply. If you can complete before 1 April 2016 you will be subject to the existing lower SDLT rates. Conveyancers can expect to be rushed off their feet until Easter!