UK home sales up over 6% on same time a year ago

UK property transactions fell between October and November but were up on an annual basis during November, HMRC says.

The taxman’s latest data on UK property transactions shows there were 108,710 non-seasonally adjusted sales above £40,000 in November.

This was down just 0.36% on October but up 6.1% on the same period last year.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, HMRC said transactions were up 0.6% monthly and 7.1% annually to 104,200 during November.

Transactions slipped in Northern Ireland, falling 6.8% between October and November to 2,320, while England saw a 0.31% dip over the month to 92,070.

Transactions were flat in Scotland but up 1.3% in Wales over the month to 5,150.

Brian Murphy, head of lending at Mortgage Advice Bureau, said: “We have now breached the million-mark in terms of the total number of residential transaction figures so far in 2017, whether you take the unadjusted figure or the adjusted figure.

“Taking into consideration political and economic headwinds this year, one would suggest that these figures evidence a market that has largely held steady due to the fact that many consumers still see property as a reliable long-term investment.

“Although we’re ending 2017 with a slightly higher interest rate than when we started 12 months ago, all in all one would suggest that we’re going into 2018 on a solid footing: demand for homes in many regions is still high, mortgages are still priced very competitively and we now have the Chancellor’s Stamp Duty exemption for first-time buyers which may see renewed activity at the entry level of the market over the coming months.

“Of course, we won’t know the ‘big number’ for total transactions this year until towards the end of January, as there is always a month’s lag in the data.

“However, for many in the industry, despite reports of a significant cooling of activity in London and the south-east over the last few months, the numbers would suggest that, for now, the UK property market as a whole has remained resilient in the face of challenging circumstances.”

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