Stamp duty holiday sees house sales speed up across Hertfordshire

The stamp duty holiday had an immediate impact on the UK property market. Picture: Getty Images/iSto

The stamp duty holiday had an immediate impact on the UK property market. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto - Credit: Picture:Getty Images/iStockphoto

Britain’s homes are selling faster than at any point in the last decade, with the stamp duty holiday credited with speeding up the market.

According to Rightmove, there’s been a 125 per cent annual increase in the number of homes selling within seven days of coming to market - the highest figure recorded since the portal started tracking this data 10 years ago.

Between July 8 - when the tax holiday was announced - and August 31, one in seven homes marketed by agents was under offer within a week (a total of 33,620), compared to one in 10 (14,924) a year ago.

Three-bed semis are selling fastest, with 19 per cent having an offer accepted within a week, compared to 13 per cent in 2019.

Rightmove’s property expert Miles Shipside said: “Not only are more properties selling in the current market than at any time over the past 10 years, but many sellers are finding that demand for homes following lockdown and the rush to beat the stamp duty deadline means they’re achieving a quicker sale, but only if they’ve been priced correctly.

He added that sellers need to move more quickly than before, “because although we’re in unchartered territory with record activity it’s still likely that demand will start to soften as it always does towards the end of the year”.

Rightmove confirmed last week that there was a supply shortage in St Albans; available stock was down 6 per cent on a year ago while demand was up 83 per cent.

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Mark Shearing of Putterills said that all of this data reflects what he’s seeing across his Hertfordshire offices, some of which are 100 per cent up on the same period last year for levels of instructions.

“There is certainly a marked increase in demand,” he said. “Sales within a week on prime or realistically-priced homes is not uncommon, but often it’s not the speed of selling, it’s making sure that it’s the right buyer.

“If you want to be taken seriously, you will need to have your own home on the market and ideally under offer.”

Demand isn’t just limited to three-bed semis, however.

“[They] are always one of our best-selling homes,” said Mark, “but demand at the moment seems to be strong across the board”.