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Stamp duty holiday triggers sharp rise in property transactions

There has been a significant increase in residential property transactions thanks in part to the stamp duty holiday, new figures show. The tax break has triggered a 22% rise in monthly property transactions, equivalent to more than 171,000 extra sales, according to Search Acumen.

The property data and insight provider says that the current stamp duty holiday has helped deliver a property market stimulus that has far outweighed the immediate response to the 2007/08 financial crisis. The current SDLT relaxation has so far fuelled a 7% rise in house prices from June 2020 to February 2021, adding £17,265 to the price of the average home in England.

An average of 103,724 residential property transactions occurred each month across England and Northern Ireland since the tax break was introduced in July 2020, up 22% from the 84,691 average in the 12 months to March 2020, before the first lockdown stalled the market.

Andy Sommerville, director at Search Acumen, said: “While many households have absorbed income hits and face greater job insecurity, the UK’s financial system has held up reasonably well since the onset of Covid. Lenders did pull back from the mortgage market in the early stages of the pandemic, but the flow of credit has gradually picked up as banks got to grips with the crisis.”

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