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Prices up 10% a year? It could happen next month says agency chief

A market analysis by Fine & Country suggests that annual house price inflation could hit 10 per cent next month.

Nicky Stevenson, managing director of Fine & Country UK, says it’s been well documented through various house price indices that the housing market is soaring. 

Property consultancy TwentyCi says sales across the UK were on average 30 per cent higher during the first quarter year-on-year, breaching a third of a million for only the second time in history. 

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During the first quarter Fine & Country’s own SSTC figures were up 63 per cent when compared to the same period last year, while government figures, Rightmove statistics and reports from business advisers such as PwC show confidence rising amongst both companies and consumers.

Although valuation activity is on the rise, Stevenson says: “As yet, this is failing to keep pace with demand and property prices are continuing to rise month on month … Based on the current trajectory, annual growth across the UK will hit double digits by June, with agents reporting the strongest sentiment to price growth between April and June since the summer of 2015.”

Looking specifically at the upper quartile of the market, Stevenson notes that property price growth across the premium markets is currently outperforming the general market and growth in excess of 10 per cent has been seen in eight out of 10 regions in England and Wales.

And because of the stamp duty holiday, she says only 36 per cent of all residential sales so far this year have been subject to tax, compared to over two-thirds during Q1 2020. 

She adds that as competition for property remains high, meeting the needs of buyers and sellers in the marketplace is paramount for agents. 

“According to research by the Property Academy, capability, market knowledge and trust are considered the most important attributes for home movers when choosing an agent, with less than one in five basing their decision on the agent offering the lowest fee. 

Floorplans, the quality and number of photographs and a map or street view are deemed important information for over 90 per cent of buyers. Broadband speeds and ‘green’ credentials are set to move up the agenda in future years, energy efficiency the main reason why home movers would choose a new build property” Stevenson concludes.

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