Strong December for property transactions

December residential property transactions have increased by 11.2% year-on-year on a non-seasonally adjusted basis, HMRC figures show.

Once the figures are seasonally adjusted residential property transactions are 6.8% higher year-on-year, as well as 6.2% higher than November 2019.

Adrian Moloney, sales director of OneSavings Bank, said: “It may be too early to call but I feel a general sense of stability and optimism returning to the market.

“However, the reality is the housing market will not recover overnight. The lack of housing stock means that becoming a home owner remains out of reach for many.

“For buyers and sellers looking to take advantage of competitive mortgage rates, attention rightly turns to the Chancellor’s budget in March to see what the government plans for the next five years.”

Neil Knight, business development director at Spicerhaart Part-Exchange and Assisted Move, said: “It’s normal that people don’t look to move house around Christmas so we’d have expected to see a bit of a fall-off in December’s figures, but that hasn’t happened. After a year of essentially flat-lining, the seasonally-adjusted figures have shown a significant increase in December.

“Taken together with the figures for the two months before Christmas, this is a huge shot in the arm and paints a picture of a real recovery starting to take hold.

“We’re already seeing a strong start to the year and it seems pretty clear that now the election is out of the way, everyone’s feeling a bit more confident and ready to make the moves that they’ve perhaps been putting off before.

“It’s still going to take some time for that to filter through fully so we’re optimistic that the first few months of 2020 could be very positive.”