Halifax Bank recently reported that the average UK house price hit a record high of £254,606 in March 2021, representing a 6.5% annual rise and adding around £15,000 to the value of the average residential property over the course of the last 12 months.
Meanwhile, statistics published by HMRC show that the number of transactions in the UK residential property market increased by almost 18% in January 2021 year on year to reach 98,830, the highest monthly total since 2017.
These figures prove that the residential property market has so far avoided the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic and is being boosted by attractive mortgage offers from various lenders, as well as the Government’s mortgage guarantee scheme which ‘guarantees’ 95% mortgages for property buyers with a 5% deposit.
Another key driver of the market’s resurgence is the temporary stamp duty holiday (the tax has been suspended on the first £500,000 of all property sales), which has recently been extended by a further three months until the end of June 2021.
So what does the future hold for the UK residential property market? Experts agree that the long-term outlook is unpredictable, with much depending on the UK’s economic performance and the impact of the Government’s roadmap for lifting lockdown.
Sentiment for the immediate future is positive however, with competitive rates on offer from mortgage providers, and many buyers seeking larger properties for better work-life balance and extra outdoor space. The success of the vaccine rollout and the lifting of lockdown restrictions should also help maintain the market’s current buoyancy during 2021.
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