Home Lifestyle UK house prices hit record high in 'surprise acceleration'

UK house prices hit record high in 'surprise acceleration'

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A stamp duty holiday is due to end on March 31, but there have been reports it could be extended for another three months. Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s chief economist, said: “House prices rose by 0.7 percent month-on-month, after taking account of seasonal effects, more than reversing the 0.2 percent monthly decline recorded in January. “This increase is a surprise. It seemed more likely that annual price growth would soften further ahead of the end of the stamp duty holiday.”

Mr Gardner added: “Many people’s housing needs have changed as a result of the pandemic, with many opting to move to less densely populated locations or property types, despite the uncertain outlook.”

Howard Archer, chief economic adviser to the EY Item Club, said house prices are predicted to fall by around three percent over 2021.

He added: “This had been revised from an expected decline of five percent given the housing market measures expected in the Budget.” Mr Archer said he expects the market to gradually improve late on this year.

He said: “Very low borrowing costs should also help, with the Bank of England unlikely to lift interest rates from 0.10 percent.”

Tomer Aboody, of property lender MT Finance, said: “An increase in prices further confirms that even though the stamp duty holiday was to end shortly, demand and desire for more space – both inside and out – outweighs any potential saving.”

Tom Bill, of Knight Frank, said: “Price growth strengthened due to a relative imbalance between supply and demand. Sellers held back.”



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