Halifax House Price Index (March): your views wanted

ended 08. April 2021

On Friday 9th April @ 08:30, the Halifax House Price Index for March is being published.

As ever, we're after your views on what's happening in the residential property market — both nationally and in the area you live and work.

Questions to answer might be:

  • Are things looking up for the property market as the economy reopens?
  • Do you expect house prices to come under pressure if unemployment rises, and, if so, does that mean a lot of people right now are buying too high?
  • What will happen when the Stamp Duty holiday ends?
  • Also, how hard is it to get mortgage finance at the moment at higher LTVs? After all, without that property's out of reach for most.

As ever, add your comments and you'll get an alert if we edit them.

Any issues with our edits, just email team@newspage.co.uk.

4 responses from the Newspage community

"We're received a phenomenal amount of enquiries in the first three months of the year. "It's possible a perfect storm has been cooked up by Covid-19 for those looking to move up the housing ladder. "First-time buyers have been locked at home with parents for the past year, realising they need to break free, parents have been driven crazy by their adult children and are throwing deposit money at them to get them onto the housing ladder, while people accepting offers from first-time buyers are then taking advantage of the Stamp Duty holiday to reduce costs when moving house. "For now, demand is definitely outstripping supply, which is pushing prices up, and there's a risk this could create a bubble if unemployment starts to rise. Even though the Stamp Duty holiday is coming to an end, with 95% loan-to-value mortgages making a return I don't expect demand to slow anytime soon. "There are definitely a lot more 95% LTV mortgages on the market now and we haven't even seen lenders utilising the Mortgage Guarantee scheme yet."
"Right now, there is a huge bottleneck in the property market, with large numbers of prospective buyers and not enough new stock. "The sheer volume of prospective buyers is partly due to the return of first time buyers, as securing a higher loan-to-value mortgage has got a lot easier over the past month or two. "With the Stamp Duty cliff edge looming, the lack of stock may be because next time buyers have less of an incentive to move, which frees up starter homes. "House builders also shifted the vast majority of their stock at the end of last year and have limited units available within the next six months. "We've even had a client reserve a property through one of the bigger national housebuilders, which won't actually be built until early 2022."
"Confidence in the housing market has grown significantly in recent months. "With the Stamp Duty holiday extension and lockdown restrictions easing, we have had a lot of clients wanting to go ahead and purchase a new property. "House prices may well come under pressure if unemployment rises, but the current positivity in the market suggests that buyers are not overly concerned about this. "Banks have eased their restrictions on loan-to-values, with a lot of lenders now offering 90% LTV products, whereas last year most banks stopped offering this. "This is another sign that lenders are expecting the market to continue with the current upward trend."
“The housing market has been absolutely hectic during the first three months of the year, with the Stamp Duty holiday incentivising people to put their plans into action. "As the Stamp Duty holiday is phased out, there will inevitably be a slowdown in property sales. but I still can't see that resulting in a significant drop in house prices. "Unemployment may indeed rise but I am confident that the UK workforce will adapt. It is also worth noting that Rishi Sunak has, so far, seen off the doomsayers with his economic creativity, and this should be applauded. "Only a handful of lenders are currently offering mortgages at 95% loan-to-value, but this is likely to change as the Government’s mortgage guarantee scheme results in more lenders offering these products."