ended 19. May 2021

This morning the Office for National Statistics published house price data for March. A selection of reactions are below.


5 responses from the Newspage community

"Over the past 12 months, we’ve seen house prices rise at the fastest rate for 17 years, which is completely at odds with the wider economy. That's a red flag right there. "Any reduction in Stamp Duty has been offset by a rise in house prices, meaning that there’s not really any savings to be had in real terms. "Are we in a bubble? Probably. Will it all come crashing down? Unlikely, as we all now know the standard response to any economic turbulence is that central banks pump the system full of liquidity using QE, but all we’re ever doing with this is kicking the can even further down the road. "For me, the main worry is that we have had continued house price growth for decades but wages have remained stagnant for the past 10 years, which means that houses are not assets but rather debt. "If things were left alone and the property market was allowed to function without interference from Governments and central banks, a price correction would almost certainly be on the cards. "It’s such a shame we're not building more houses as this is where the problem really lies. There are far too many people chasing too few homes.
"Frankly speaking, it's a brutal market for buyers, with rabid demand and meagre supply driving house prices ever higher. "House prices will continue to rise as long as demand outstrips supply and with the number of new houses being built or coming onto the market woefully inadequate, mortgage availability improving and the feel good factor returning to the economy, the boom looks set to continue."
"The Stamp Duty holiday and various Government support schemes have certainly driven house prices upward, as there has been a significant increase in demand. "March and April were our busiest months to date and May has been busy, too, although not quite as hectic. I believe this slight decrease in activity is a sign of the Stamp Duty holiday closing in on the deadline and I predict activity will remain stable at this level. "I cannot see the market dropping as a consequence of the recent growth, and the property market will remain resilient, perhaps stagnant before more growth in the future."
"Virtually every measure, from soaring house price indices and record levels of mortgage approvals, through to creaking banks, busy brokers, overworked solicitors and beaming estate agents, show a property market booming throughout the first few months of the year. "The question isn't so much what will happen when the pandemic stimulus ends, but will it end at all? Interest rates have been below 1% for 12 years. Help to Buy was first introduced in 2013 and is still going. The Stamp Duty holiday has already been extended once, the 'cliff edge' the extension was set to avoid just seems to have been moved on by three months so will they need to extend it again? "Both record low interest rates and Help to Buy were introduced to aid recovery from the Credit Crunch crisis of 2008 onwards. They are both still in place however, proving the old adage that it's far easier to introduce stimulus measures than take them away."
"Even though the mania around the Stamp Duty holiday has waned, we are entrenched in a market with too many buyers chasing too few properties. "We have witnessed a lot more chains falling down recently, maybe because buyers have offered on multiple properties in order to secure something, anything. "We have also detected a significant stretching of the truth from prospective buyers whose stories about being “a cash buyer" or “ chain-free” collapse quicker than a Jenga tower. "It will be interesting to see whether there is a lag in the numbers as the archaic conveyancing process begins to grind to a halt under the pressure of volume."