Meanwhile, first time buyer mortgage completions have remained resilient, and are now circa 5 per cent above pre-pandemic levels, despite growing affordability pressures.
Overall, house price growth has continued to outpace earnings by a wide margin, and in turn has contributed to pushing up mortgage repayments relative to incomes.
The number of cash transactions has remained elevated, but stable representing circa 35 per cent of the market.
This is partly a reflection of an ageing population, where more people own their homes outright, but also represents some properties purchased for investment, such as a holiday home or buy to let.
In Gardner’s view the strength of buy-to-let purchases involving a mortgage may be due to sentiment being buoyed by the strength of rental demand and upward pressures on rent, which “may be encouraging landlords to enter the market, particularly if they view property as a hedge against inflation".
Propertymark’s chief executive, Nathan Emerson described the market as “relentless” and said he expects to see further growth in the property market for some time to come “while it remains cheap to borrow money and with the number of buyers still outnumbering properties available".
Likewise, Chestertons managing director, Richard Davies echoed this view and said it has seen a “clear uplift” in the number of viewings and the number of buyers registering with its branches in July.
“Although demand still outweighs supply, there have been 8 per cent more properties available for sale in July compared to June. Looking ahead, and in the event of more properties coming onto the market, buyers may benefit from less drastic increases in property prices."