Sales reach decade high
Property sales have seen their fastest annual growth in a decade, say Lloyds Bank.
According to the research from Lloyds in the six months to September 2013, property sales rose to their highest level since the 2007 downturn.
The figures show that the North, the West Midlands and Wales and London were named as regions with the biggest proportion of what are being dubbed ‘property hotspots’.
100 percent of towns within these hotspot areas showed an annual increase in home sales.
This rise has spread to the rest of England and Wales, with sales climbing from 26 percent to 98 percent, according to Lloyds.
Using Land Registry figures, the Lloyds report found there were 396,756 house sales in the six months to September, demonstrating an increase of more than a fifth in the same period in 2012, and marking the highest year-on-year increase in ten years.
However, property sales are still two fifths behind reaching the market peak of September 2006, which saw 673,699 sales in the half year.
Lloyds reported that there had been ‘remarkable consistency’ between sales in London and other regions of England, with both the North West and the East Midlands seeing a 23 percent rise between March and September 2012, and again in the same period the next year.
The lowest rise was reported from the North East, which only increased activity by 19 percent.
Lloyds Mortgages director, Marc Page, put the increase down to a number of factors, saying: “Low interest rates, improvements in consumer confidence and government schemes, such as Help to Buy, all appear to have contributed to the rise in home sales.”
Housing Minister, Kris Hopkins, said: “With housing sales at a 10-year high, it’s clear that the housing market has turned a corner.
“Our efforts to cut the record deficit have kept interest rates low, meaning home ownership is now at its most affordable since 2007.
“Leading developers have said they’ll build more as a direct response to this increased demand, with house building now growing at its fastest rate in a decade.”