Mortgages  

Extended stamp duty holiday ‘re-accelerates’ house prices

Extended stamp duty holiday ‘re-accelerates’ house prices
 Credit: Chris J. Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

House prices in April saw their biggest monthly rise in 17 years after the stamp duty holiday was extended in the Budget.

According to Nationwide’s house price index, published today (April 30), prices rose by 2.1 per cent in April, after taking account of seasonal effects, marking the biggest monthly rise since February 2004.

Annual house price growth rebounded to 7.1 per cent in April, up from 5.7 per cent in the previous month.

The average price of a property reached a new record high of £238,831 - up £15,916 over the past 12 months.

Robert Gardner, chief economist at Nationwide, said: “Just as expectations of the end of the stamp duty holiday led to a slowdown in house price growth in March, so the extension of the stamp duty holiday in the Budget prompted a reacceleration in April.

“However, our research suggests that while the stamp duty holiday is impacting the timing of housing transactions, for most people it is not the key motivating factor prompting them to move in the first place.

“For example, amongst homeowners surveyed at the end of April that were either moving home or considering a move, three quarters said this would have been the case even if the stamp duty holiday had not been extended.”

Jason Tebb, chief executive of property portal OnTheMarket, described the monthly and annual rises as unsurprising, with most towns and cities seeing “critically low” levels of homes available for sale and buyer demand “continuing to surge”.

Tebb added: “We would certainly anticipate that the current buoyant market is likely to continue throughout the summer and there is an optimism that, with lockdown measures now beginning to ease, those who were previously concerned about listing their property for sale and accommodating viewings are now more confident, given the huge success of the Covid vaccination programme.”

chloe.cheung@ft.com

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