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House sales hit record of £37bn in August

18th August 2020

A post-lockdown boom in housing market activity has seen house sales rise to their highest recorded level in ten years, according to property website Rightmove.

The platform reported that sales in August were up by 20% on the previous recorded high, with a total value of £37 billion.

This was a break from typical seasonal patterns, as house sales usually slow down during the summer holidays.

Miles Shipside, Rightmove director and housing market analyst, said there's "an added layer of additional demand due to people's changed housing priorities after the experience of lockdown".

Asking prices increased across seven regions in the UK, rising to new records in regions like Devon and Cornwall, but prices in London fell by 2% month-on-month.

The increase may have also been driven by the temporary stamp duty land tax holiday of up to £500,000 for sales between 8 July 2020 and 31 March 2021.

Shipside said:

"To minimise the risk of missing the 31 March stamp duty deadline it's best to plan well ahead.

"This busy pace of the market looks set to continue in the short term, and although the market has proven resilient since reopening we still need to be mindful of the wider economic concerns as the year progresses."

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