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Sharp rise in number of property sales agreed

Christina Hoghton
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Christina Hoghton

A surge in demand has boosted agreed home sales by 28% compared to pre-lockdown levels

New home sales are running 28% above pre-lockdown levels, said Zoopla, as the surge in demand converts into actual sales.

The property portal said that the market suspension during lockdown reduced the flow of new supply and sales agreed by 90%.

In contrast, demand for housing has rebounded strongly as pent-up demand returns to the market. In the last month demand from buyers has been double that of the same period in 2019.

Supply and demand imbalance

Zoopla also noted a widening gap between supply and demand which it expects will support house prices over the second half of 2020.

The greatest short-term support for property prices will be in cities where demand has grown the most over the first seven months of 2020 compared to 2019 – such as Sheffield, Liverpool, Manchester and Nottingham, the top fastest growing cities in terms of house price growth.

Richard Donnell, research and insight Director at Zoopla, said: “COVID and the lockdown have shifted the dynamics of supply and demand across the housing market.

“The staggered reopening of housing markets across countries and the added impetus from the stamp duty holiday mean we expect buyer demand and new sales volumes to hold at current levels over the next two months.

“The net result will be continued support for house price growth at current levels over the second half of the year. Regional cities in northern England and the Midlands have the strongest underlying trends.”