The property market remains buoyant after the lifting of the lockdown, with price rises in July and August set to be above last summer’s levels, according to a new survey.
However, the report says the market remains much quieter than last year, with the underlying sales volume this summer expected to be nearly a third less (29%) than last year.
The findings come in a new survey from property website propertypriceadvice.co.uk and are based on statistical analysis of the views of site visitors.
North showing most interest
The site’s Market Activity Predictor report predicts:
Prices will rise in July and August to put them 1.4% ahead of the same time last year.
Transaction levels this summer will bounce around unpredictably as the loosening of lockdown restrictions means a backlog of sales are processed in quick time. But the underlying level of transactions will be stable.
The North of England is reporting the highest levels of interest in moving home, while London appears to be the weakest region in terms of buyer interest coming out of lockdown.
Lockdown ‘turning point’
Mark Pragnell, economics advisor to propertypriceadvisor.co.uk and director of strategy research consultancy Pragmatix Advisory, said: “Interest in moving home had been on a steady downward slide since summer last year, well before coronavirus. In the days before lockdown, requests for valuations had fallen to 70% below their four-year average.
“Lockdown has been a turning point. The numbers of online valuations have swung back quickly, and in the most recent weeks have returned to or are above the recent years’ norm.
“Renewed interest during lockdown will be partly the result of people having more time at home with their computers and smartphones, and some will reflect more households in financial distress. But this recent rebound is in people saying they want to move – so the interest is more than casual.”
However Mr Pragnell warned the Covid pandemic could still derail the property market recovery.
“Getting the ‘unlock’ of the economy right will be crucial,” he added. “All eyes will be on Rishi Sunak and his emergency budget to see if he can bolster families’ confidence in their financial circumstances and get the country moving again.”