The property market was buoyant last year with soaring house prices, and competition among buyers currently remains strong.
UK house prices rose by an average of 10.8 per cent last year according to the House Price Index from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
In England, they rose by 10.7 per cent, 13 per cent in Wales and 11.2 per cent in Scotland.
The average house price grew by £27,000 last year, with Land Registry data showing that the average UK home was worth £275,000.
London saw the lowest annual growth at 5.5 per cent as more people chose to live in more rural areas due to the increase in remote working. While some people are returning to the office, or favouring a hybrid working model, it’s perhaps too early to say whether this will have an impact on property prices in the capital.
The property market remained buoyant during the pandemic, partly due to the stamp duty holiday, which came to an end in September last year, but also due to buyers reviewing their property needs after working from home for so long. Many people decided they needed more space to work from home while others, who felt cooped up indoors during the various lockdowns, wanted a garden or a larger outdoor space.
At present, there’s still more buyers than properties which is keeping prices stable. A spokesperson for Legal & General said that a lack of available properties is creating strong competition among buyers which is likely to dominate the property market this year.
Rising interest rates
However, other industry experts have said that rising interest rates could mean that the market will be ‘more measured’ over the next year. Buyers are having to deal with reduced affordability as well as rising inflation and higher living costs.
There may be another interest rate rise in March, so if you have an existing mortgage on a variable rate, or a tracker rate mortgage, now is a good time to look at a new fixed-rate deal so that you can lock in a fixed fee for the next two to five years.
We’re here to help with remortgaging advice so contact us for more information.