Paul Stockwell, Chief Commercial Officer at Gatehouse Bank, comments on September’s ONS UK House Price Index data
"As predicted, house price growth has intensified in September fuelled by pent-up demand coupled with significant cost-savings to buyers presented by the stamp duty holiday. I expect this trend will continue in the short term as buyers feel the urgency to secure property deals and allow time for completion before the tax break ends.
“What began as a disastrous year for the property industry has been turned-on-its-head by government interventions, creating a surge of demand predominantly in England and Northern Ireland where the stamp duty reduction is greatest. This in itself has presented new challenges to the industry with property portal Zoopla estimating 418,000 sales in the pipeline nationally, 50 per cent more than the typical number for this time of year.
“Bank of England data has already indicated that mortgage approvals in September represented the highest levels of agreed borrowing since before the Global Financial Crisis more than a decade ago. But as pressure on the property industry resources grows, it will be interesting to see if the Government concedes to requests from the industry to extend the stamp duty holiday and alleviate the expected congestion in the new year.”