Close to 100,000 homes across the United Kingdom sold in August ahead of the expiration of a government tax break.
The surge of sales marked a near 21 percent increase from August 2020, and 32 percent more than the total sales in July when seasonally adjusted, according to Mansion Global.
August is typically a slower month for sales, but the tax break expiration at the end of September is likely fueling the activity.
The U.K. introduced a stamp duty holiday in July 2020, giving buyers a break on the first 500,000 pounds of a home purchase. The break was reduced in England and Northern Ireland to the first 250,000 pounds of a purchase on July 1.
Overall housing sales demand is particularly strong in coastal, rural and suburban markets, Nick Leeming, chairman of the residential agency Jackson-Stops, told Mansion Global. He expects that will fuel strong activity through the fall, according to the report.
London has seen home prices fall in some of its more expensive neighborhoods, but the pace of sales in the first half of the year was significantly faster than the same period last year, or even 2019.
[MG] — Dennis Lynch