Stamp Duty imposition causes surge in UK housing prices

The imposition of the new Buy to Let tax earlier this month triggered a wave of last minute buyers, keen to avoid the stamp duty deadline of April 1st. This three percent increase in tax has been a bone of contention for many landlords since its announcement last year.

This surge of activity has brought about an increase of 1.3% in the average asking price of new homes coming on to the market, bringing the total average to £307.033. Property website Rightmove highlighted the stamp duty change as igniting “an onward chain reaction” as landlords raced to beat the deadline.

House prices have risen 7.3 percent compared to April last year, and this April’s jump represented a £3800 rise, which can in part be attributed to the increased demands for larger properties from second steppers. Somewhat surprisingly, the increased demand wasn’t from existing landlords looking to sell to other landlords, but rather from first time sellers looking to trade up on their properties, according to Miles Shipside, Rightmove director.

The figures made available by Rightmove show that homes across England and Wales have been churning out higher asking prices in all areas when compared with April 2015. The biggest increase is in the east of England, with a 10.8 percent rise, bringing the average to £331,780, and the lowest in the north east, with a still sizeable 3.5% increase to £151,459.

The demand seems to have dissipated slightly now, though figures are showing that larger, more expensive homes are now more in demand than ever. The impact this will have on the property market however, remains to be seen.

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