Property market ‘buoyant’ throughout summer months

Britain’s property market remained ‘buoyant’ throughout June, July and August, with prices and transactions both picking up towards the end of the summer.

According to new research from mortgage lender Halifax, property prices in the three months to August were 2.6 per cent higher than in the same three months last year.

The high street lender’s report reveals that values grew steadily throughout the summer months.

In August, UK-wide values rose by almost £2,500, with the average property priced at approximately £222,293 – edging ever so slightly above previous highs of £222,190 recorded in December 2016.

However, the annual growth rate last month was 2.1 per cent – down significantly from a peak of ten per cent recorded in March 2016, when buy-to-let investors rushed to beat the introduction of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) changes in April.

Separate data published by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) in recent days has revealed that property transactions also edged up throughout the summer.

In fact, the latest official data suggests that the number of property sales recorded across the UK in July exceeded 100,000 for the seventh month running.

Russell Galley, of Halifax, has said that recent data suggests that “buoyancy may be returning” to the market.

However, former Chairman of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), Jeremy Leaf has warned that analysts should not get “too carried away” with numbers.

He said: “It is worth remembering that house-price growth is being underpinned by a shortage of supply, including housebuilding, historically low mortgage rates and relatively low unemployment, rather than strong buyer demand.”

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Nigel is the Managing Partner and Head of Litigation and Dispute Resolution in the London office of Mackrell Turner Garrett.