The property market is still performing well, and prices went up again in March according to figures released by Halifax.

Thinking about moving house? Prices are going up and the market is performing well, so while you don’t want to rush your property choice, you certainly don’t want to leave it too long to start looking.

March has been another strong month for the property market, with house prices increasing by 1.1 per cent from February 2021 according to Halifax’s House Price Index. In January to March 2021, house prices were 0.3 per cent higher than in October to December 2020. House prices were 6.5 per cent higher than in March 2020.

The average house price in the UK is £254,606. Russell Galley, Managing Director of Halifax, says: ‘A year on from the early days of the first national lockdown, March’s data shows that house prices rose by 6.5 per cent annually, or £15,430 in cash terms. Casting our minds back 12 months, few could have predicted quite how well the housing market would ride out the impact of the pandemic so far, let alone post growth of more than £1000 per month on average.’

Halifax expects the elevated levels of activity to be maintained in the coming months, citing consumer confidence spurred on by the successful vaccine rollout and buyer demand fuelled by a desire for larger properties and more outdoor space.

Stamp duty holiday

The stamp duty holiday has also boosted the market. It was extended during the Chancellor’s budget to the end of June, and after that, buyers will pay zero stamp duty on the first £250,000 of a property if they complete a purchase before the end of September. From October onwards, the nil-band rate will revert back to the original amount of £125,000 of a property.

However, although Halifax said it was cautious about the longer-term outlook due to the potential for higher unemployment, estate agent Knight Frank recently predicted prices to rise by four per cent overall this year.

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