House buying boom sees 'busiest month in a decade'
By David Wood | 17th August 2020
Despite all the uncertainty of the Coronavirus pandemic, July saw a £37bn UK house-buying boom.
This was the busiest month of sales in a decade, according to property website Rightmove.
Record-breaking transactions coincided with the country going into recession and the suspension of stamp duty.
The spike followed a suspension of the housing market during the coronavirus lockdown, but also coincided with the UK plunging into a recession.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak also cut stamp duty in July, in an effort to encourage more people to get on the housing ladder.
Rightmove said the average asking price for a house in the UK in August stood at £319,497, down by around 0.2% from July's £320,265 - which was a record high.
Many parts of the country recorded new highs in August but London pulled the national asking price down, with average prices falling by around 2%.
House prices usually drop over the summer, with many people opting to travel on holiday, according to the website. In July 2019, £25bn worth of sales were made..
James Birt, managing director of Gloucestershire-based estate agents Naylor Powell, said: "We have seen a significant increase in activity and sales agreed across our four Gloucestershire offices.
"We are being invited to value almost a third more properties than we were this time last year. Sales being agreed for June and July is approximately 20% higher than the same period last year. "Clients are telling us that there are a number of factors making them look to move now. Firstly, by not going on holiday they have more time and enthusiasm to make a long term-investment.
"Secondly, the stamp duty holiday is making them bring forward plans which they may have had for next year. And thirdly, there is a significant demand for more space at home, whether that be more rooms or a larger garden.
"Spending so much more time at home has given clients time to assess what they want in their next home."
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