SOLICITORS saw an increase in customer submission as the average Welsh home price surged above £ 200,000 for the first time.
It came when the UK and Welsh Governments announced an extension of the Holiday Stamp Duty – known in Wales as the Land Transaction Tax – to June 30th and plans were unveiled for a new 5% home budget system.
Law firms in Wales welcomed the move as it will prevent transactions from collapsing in the coming weeks, which would have created a bottleneck of cases and uncertainty for homebuyers.
Edward Hughes Solicitors, based in Rhyl and Colwyn Bay, has seen an increase in transportation since the turn of the year after nine difficult months as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.
Senior Partner David Jones said, “The real estate market has revived and the number of homebuyers has increased over the past few months.
“Extending the deadline for real estate transaction tax is good for the economy as trying to force sales to prevent buyers from paying the additional tax would have been negative.
“Promoters and real estate companies now have a little more leeway to get business across the line, which in turn will help the sector continue to move in the right direction as we seek a post-pandemic recovery.”
Data from property intelligence and technology provider Search Acumen found the volume of property transactions registered in England and Wales increased 27% between November and December, largely due to the rush to take advantage of stamp duty.
According to their analysis, 73,142 transactions were logged by transportation companies in December, up from 57,632 in the previous month when transportation companies rushed to help potential buyers get their foot in the door and complete transactions before the window closed.
The results also had an impact on property prices. In North Wales, Anglesey house prices rose 16% annually to £ 237,782 while Conwy (£ 224,068) and Flintshire (£ 216,224) rose 13.7% and 13.3% respectively. Denbighshire has seen house prices rise 2.5% annually.
Tom Denman, Chief Financial Officer of the Principality Building Society said: “The strength of the housing recovery in the second half of 2020 is remarkable, and this reflects both the incentives given by the Welsh government to the limited time land transaction tax vacation that pent-up demand built during the initial lockdown and the race for space to buy larger properties with larger gardens.
“In the fourth quarter, all local authorities reported higher property prices than a year earlier. This increased demand was driven by higher savings in many households during the lockdowns combined with persistently low mortgage rates. “
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