Prime Resi: Transaction levels continue in healthy vein HMRC
Wed 21 Oct 2015
The residential property market continued its relatively healthy trend through September, with 106,030transactions lodged with the Land Registry.
The seasonally adjusted estimate of the number of residential property transactions increased by 0.8% betweenAugust 2015 and September 2015. This months seasonally adjusted figure is 5.4% higher compared with thesame month last year.
For September 2015, the number of non-adjusted residential transactions was around the same level as inAugust 2015. The number of non-adjusted residential transactions was 5.4% higher than in August 2014.The top-end of the market is, however, still pretty subdued, as weve reported many times since higher SDLTrates for higher-value homes kicked in.
Peter Rollings, CEO of Marsh & Parsons: There was a real step-change in the gears of housing market activityover the summer, and since June property sales have been ticking along nicely, with this month-on-month risethe latest cause for optimism. Theres now clear blue water between sales levels now and a year ago and wereseeing real eagerness from buyers.
Already, many buyers and sellers will be using the countdown to Christmas as their deadline to move home andcomplete transactions, meaning activity often picks up the pace in autumn. London is a city of two halves at themoment at the top-end, buyers are more cautious, and are taking their time to get used to steeper stamp dutyon million pound plus property sales. But at the mid and lower range of the market where domestic buyers tend to
dominate there remain high levels of demand facing up to restricted housing stock. Here were seeing goodactivity when property is priced correctly, and longer chains than ever as sales activity stacks up.
Brian Murphy, Head of Lending at Mortgage Advice Bureau: After a busy start to the summer in July, housingtransaction activity has since fallen back slightly. This seasonal change is common, and transactions are still 5%higher year-on-year: an encouraging sign that the market is continuing to recover.
Demand from potential buyers is holding strong, especially as many are moving quickly to secure a competitivemortgage rate before interest rates rise. Borrowers are also benefitting from attractive deals offered by lenders
keen to meet their targets by the end of the year. Although house prices have continued to rise, they are doing soat a much steadier pace compared to 2014, helping to improve affordability.
It is certainly promising to see housing activity above the levels seen 12 months ago, but there is increasingpressure on levels of housebuilding as demand continues to outweigh supply. The reality is there are still notenough homes to cater for the strong housing demand across the UK, and transactions are likely to suffer ifsupply doesnt soon improve. New government schemes to improve affordable housing must be in addition tobetter overall housebuilding levels if they are to make any real impact.
N.B. Figures for 2015-16 are provisional and therefore subject to revision.