Stamp Duty cut boosts London’s Housing Supply


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  • Stamp Duty surge: Instructions up 14% on the month and 15% on the year in London
  • Time to sell: House prices up 6.8% on the year in London and 1.1% across England and Wales
  • Buy-to-let market still struggling – landlord sales down 14% on the month across England and Wales and 9.4% in London due to Government tax hikes

Paul Smith, CEO of haart, the UK’s largest independent estate agent, comments:

“It is encouraging to see a surge in London property market activity in the weeks since the Chancellor’s Budget announcement – 14% more buyers have put their property on the market than last month, and 15% more than last year. This renewed confidence is also reflected in price growth. London buyers paid £33,545 more for their homes in November, compared to the same month last year. We can expect this normal level of house price growth (3-4%) to sustain into the New Year.

“Once the Christmas lull is over I expect we will see a surge in transactional activity across the whole country. We see some of our highest website traffic all year on Boxing Day, as potential buyers use their time off work with family to make preliminary searches for a move in the New Year, and next year ‘would be’ first-time buyers have more of a reason to take the plunge.

“In 2017 we saw some of the highest net completions for new homes in years – and I predict this trend to continue next year, and the ‘New Homes’ market will be an increasingly important part of the market, and begin to improve on the amount of UK stock. However it is crucial that we build the right type of homes that meet the UK’s needs. One and two bedroom apartments are all well and good but we need new homes for families to free up stock lower down the ladder.

“The numbers of landlords registering to buy is still down 38% on the year, and we continue to see more leaving the market every month. This is having a knock on effect on sales to landlords, which means fewer properties available for renters again next year, and therefore higher rents. It is highly unlikely that the Government will look at stamp duty again any time soon, so we can expect the buy-to-let and rental market to continue to suffer next year.”


National Trends

House prices across England and Wales in October rose by 3.9% on the month and by 1.1% on the year. The average house price now sits at £231,085.

New buyer demand for homes fell by 6.5% on the month and is still down 4.6% annually. The number of properties coming onto the market has risen by 1% on the month, but is down by 7.5% on the year.This month there are 10 buyers chasing every property across England and Wales.

The market has become more efficient this month, as the number of transactions has decreased at a slower rate than the number of viewings. Meaning that buyers are choosing to look at more properties before they buy.

The average purchase price for first-time buyers has fallen by 9.3%, however is up by 0.1% on the year. This comes as the number of first-time buyers entering the market has fallen by 2.4%, and by 2.4% on the year.

Despite the fall in average prices, the average amount paid for a deposit has risen, by 0.5% on the month and by 16.2% on the year.

The average property price in London has risen by 4% on the month, however has fallen by 0.8% on the year. Annual growth was less than the rest of the UK. The number of new buyers entering the market has fallen by 8% on the month, and is down by 8.1% on the year. At the same time, the number of new instructions has risen by 15.2% on the month, and by 14.6% on the year. Sale transactions are down 0.8% on the month, but are up by 1.1% on the year.


The Lettings Market

The number of tenants entering the market across the UK has riesn by 6.4% on the month, however is still down 13.6% annually. Due to a rise in demand average rents are up by 1%. The average rent now sits at £1,304 across the UK. Demand in London has fallen by 14% on the month, and by 36.3% on the year.  London rents have risen by 0.3%, and the average rental price now sits at £1,763.

The number of landlords registering to buy has fallen this month by 3.9% across England and Wales, and by 38% on the year.In London numbers fell by 6.6% on the month, and by 28.4% on the year. The number of buy-to-let sales fell by 14% on the month in England and Wales, and 9.4% in London. This is up 4.3% on the year across England and Wales and down 4.9% in London.