Weekly Summary: 24th September 2021

DATA: Rightmove reported asking prices rose 5.8% in year to September

They also reported “Hottest ever competition to buy a home” with “buyer demand per property for sale more than double pre-pandemic levels” though they note the number of new property listings are rose in early September as the autumn selling period began.

DATA: HMRC reported residential transactions bounced back in August

Though still well below recent highs, transactions bounced back to 98,300, a similar level to the pre-pandemic average. Data for Scotland, where their tax holiday ended in March, shows continued high levels of transactions though the data may be revised.

DATA: ONS reported £12.1 billion SDLT receipts in year to August

Although receipts fell in August, the high level of transactions still liable for stamp duty in recent months has helped push total receipts back to the levels seen prior to the pandemic.

DATA: VOA released statistics on the stock of domestic properties in 2021

The release provides data on the council tax band, property type, and build period of homes in England & Wales. See our Chart of the Week for some analysis of this data.

DATA: UK Finance published data on later life mortgage lending

The data provides a quarterly summary of mortgage lending to borrowers over the age of 55 and includes the warning that “For the first time since records began more than half of all new mortgages are due to end after the homeowner’s 65th birthday”.

DATA: Bank of England agents’ summary of business conditions, Q3

The release reports “ongoing strong demand for housing and a shortage of properties for sale in most parts of the UK. However, demand was reported to have eased slightly following the end of the property transaction tax holiday”. Meanwhile “Demand for rental property also remained strong in most parts of the UK, causing rents to increase”.

POLICY: MHCLG becomes Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities

Another name change for the department with former Bank of England Chief Economist Andy Haldane appointed as the Head of the Levelling Up Taskforce.

POLICY: HMT consultation on the Residential Property Developer Tax

HM Treasury are “seeking your views on the draft legislation of the Residential Property Developer Tax ahead of its inclusion in the 2021-22 Finance Bill”.

REPORT: Create Streets Foundation’s final No Place Left Behind report

The Commission’s final report (PDF) provides a long list of policy proposals for “Levelling up our left behind places”. This NEF blog by Rose Grayston provides a brief summary.

REPORT: UCL released third report on local authority housebuilding

The report continues the survey work of the first two reports and finds that “80% of authorities now say they are directly engaged in housing delivery (up from 69% previously)” and “55% of authorities now report having a local housing company”.

REPORT: Royal Academy of Engineering report on decarbonising construction

The report suggests the “UK construction sector should decarbonise more urgently in line with the national emission reduction” and “should include embodied carbon of built infrastructure”.

REPORT: Lichfield report on planning permission build-out

Their latest report on planning permissions “does a deep dive into five local authority case studies, using their monitoring data to look at what is happening to individual planning permissions at the local level once granted” and finds “only a small percentage (3-5%) have actually lapsed”.

Chart of the Week

The VOA published data on the stock of properties based on Council Tax records provides a useful summary of the housing stock in England and Wales. There are numerous uses for it including monitoring the change in dwelling stock over time, as per our chart of the week which shows net change by number of bedrooms. The data is not a perfect proxy for the actual net change in dwellings as there may be other factors influencing the inclusion or exclusion of homes in the data than them being built, converted or knocked down. This week’s data provides a slightly lower estimate of 200,000 net additions in the 2020-21 financial year than the 220,000 suggested by Energy Performance Certificate data.