Residential property transactions hit a record high of 456,000 in Q1 2021, with 191,000 in March alone, thanks largely to the anticipated end of the stamp duty holiday, according to latest residential research published by Colliers.
Transactions rose from 347,000 in Q4 2020, and are expected to continue at a high level while the stamp duty holiday remains in place, and reduced rates continue until October, according to Residential Report Q2 2021. The average mortgage borrowed also reached a record high of £216,591 in Q1 2020, up from £204,621 in Q1 2020.
Andrew White, head of Residential at Colliers said: “Currently there are no signs of residential market activity slowing. The number of property transactions reached a record-high of 191,000 in March, more than twice the March 2020 figure and although mortgage approvals slowed, they remain well above the five-year monthly average.
“With the Government’s extension of the stamp duty holiday, as well as new 95% LTV mortgages, we expect momentum will be sustained in the short term. House price growth has surged to a high recently, and we expect growth to continue into next year.”
Other key findings from the report are:
- The number of house building completions hit a record high of almost 47,000 in Q4 2020.
- Housing starts rose to a two-year high of 42,000 in Q4, from 36,000 in Q3 2020.
- 82,735 mortgages were approved, 30 per cent above the five-year monthly average of 67,100.
- The average mortgage taken out stands at £216,591 in Q1 2021, up from £204,621 in Q1 2020 and the highest figure on record.
- 94,364 BTR units are in the planning stage, an increase of 31% on the Q1 2020 level and the highest quarterly figure on record. The total BTR pipeline is 130,418, 20% higher than the corresponding 2020 figure.
Oliver Kolodseike, UK deputy chief economist at Colliers, added: “The UK’s economic recovery is well underway and fiscal and monetary policy is still favourable towards the residential market, although there is expected to be some slow down in growth later in the year, as the Government’s interventions come to an end.
“While there could also be a temporary drop in housing completions later in the year, as a result in a reduced number of housing starts during the first UK lockdown, construction output is increasing and successful planning applications are stable.”