There were more homes sold in the UK in August than in any month since February of last year, according to a new report.
Seasonally-adjusted data from HM Revenue and Customs indicate that 106,480 homes were sold during the month. This represented the third month in succession where more than 100,000 sales were recorded.
However, this total is still a long-way short of the 150,000 monthly sales seen in the housing boom of 2006.
The official data shows that UK property prices increased by 5.2% in the year to the end of July. This is a long way above general prices with CPI inflation standing at zero in August.
Housing commentator Henry Pryor said, ‘despite rising prices, buyers and sellers are able to transact.’ He asked peers to, ‘look out for the increasing impact of cash buyers in the months to come’ before continuing by saying, ‘figures from mortgage lenders suggest that around 40% of all homes today are bought without a mortgage leaving the government unable to dampen house prices as they once did-by raising rates.’
UK property sales highest for 18 months
‘As we saw last December, the chancellor now reaches for other levers to control the excess of the market,’ Pyror continued. ‘He had almost snuffed out the top end of the market with huge changes made to Stamp Duty Land Tax, making buying the most expensive homes very unattractive.’
Peter Rollings, chief executive of Marsh & Parsons estate agents, said that rising demand, coupled with a chronic lack of supply, would ultimately result in house prices continuing to increase, particularly in the capital.