Housing market – Busiest ever first half-year

Village - July 2021


Charlie HiggsMarket Update – July 2021

By Charlie Higgs – Owner Village Properties

Just released first-half year stats show that nationally, the first six months of 2021, were the busiest ever recorded. Pushing the average price of property coming onto the market to a new record high, up by over £21,000 (+6.7%) in just six months!!*

To put that into some perspective, that’s 140,000 more properties being sold within the first six months of 2021. This compared to 85,000 fewer properties being listed for sale than the long term average.

Analysing the data, the huge surge in buyer activity reveals a shortfall of some 225,000 properties, which if these properties had been available, would have corrected the imbalance between supply and demand. Instead, it has, and continues to, push the price of property ever upwards.

Looking forward

As we recover from the frenetic activity of the weeks leading to the 30th June stamp duty cut off, we take a deep breath and offer some thoughts as to how the Reading property market might look in the coming months.

Many pundits have predicted that the ending of the stamp duty holiday would bring an end to the booming property, if the current trends in buyer activity are anything to go by, the boom is a long way from being over.

Whilst the stamp duty holiday has undoubtedly helped many buyers save money, it has not been the primary driver for the current booming property market, it’s rarely that simplistic. From our local experience, we see the ‘search for space’ trend as being a key influencer in buyer activity.

We have seen an increasing number of buyers from more urban areas of London looking at Reading’s more affordable property, offering more space both inside and out. The trend is fuelled by buyers being able to work from home, and Reading’s relatively easy commute.

So it is the combination of flexible home working opportunities, value for money, the search for space and easy commuting that has been the local market driver for the boom.

Is now a good time to sell your home?

Perhaps the question I’m most frequently asked at the moment, although for an estate agent, it is perhaps a bit of a leading question. Nevertheless, even the most cynical commentator would find it difficult to argue against the logic of selling in what must be the most active seller’s market in a very long time.

In today’s market, when properties are in short supply, it is not unusual for competing buyers to bid against each other, sometimes over the asking price, pushing already high prices above what would be expected.

So yes, if you are ready to move, now is a great time to sell.

Stamp Duty Holiday Explained

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT), its official title, had its nil rate band, which is the rate before you start paying SDLT on residential property, temporarily increased to £5000, 000 on the 1st July 2020 and was originally due to end on 31st March 2021 but later extended to 30th June 2021.

From the 1st July 2021, the nil rate band is reduced to £250,000, this ends on 30 September 2021. And then, from the 1st October 2021, the nil rate band will revert the pre-pandemic level of £125,000.

To calculate stamp duty, the government provides a very useful Stamp Duty Land Tax calculator – Click here

Charlie Higgs

THINKING OF SELLING? It’s never been a better time to sell…

Use our instant online valuation tool or give us a call 

(* Stats from Rightmove’s July ‘House Price Index’)