The last three months have seen a continuation of the turbulent market that prime Central London has been experiencing for over twelve months. However, the tide seems very much to be turning, with lockdown restrictions continuing to ease and Freedom Day looming large on the horizon, couple this with a very successful vaccine roll out program, demand for quality properties is now very high and increasing. Many agents will be making year on year comparisons with the same quarter last year, this is largely folly as the market was prohibited from functioning properly at that time, but it does give some indication of the stark difference from twelve months ago. We are now seeing the effects of all time low mortgage interest rates, a Stamp duty holiday and the months of prior pent-up demand putting serious upward pressure on London house prices.
The rush to the open space of the countryside now seems a less and less likely long-term option for many households as the myth that working from home can be a solution for large corporations now seems to have been dispelled. A significant number of the large city banks have come out in the media to say they are instructing all their staff that normal working practices will resume with office based working hours to become the norm once again.
Tenants are returning to London in large numbers as the prospect of imminent return to the office and easing of lockdown restrictions has triggered a sharp rise in demand for rented accommodation in and around Central London. Over the last several weeks Landstones lettings department have been inundated with tenant registrations as more and more young professionals head back into the capital to take up new jobs or return to the office of their pre Covid position. Pubs, restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues have all begun to open their doors and are now crying out for staff to help cope with the surge in demand. The school terms are also back to full functionality bringing many families back to town, this has seen a short sharp increase in demand for larger family homes especially in the catchment areas for good schools.
Going forward into Q3 both Landstones sales and lettings departments are extremely optimistic for the future of the markets. Even with the stamp duty holiday drawing to a close on the 30th of June leaving little time to push a sale over the line before this incentive turn to a slightly less finically lucrative taper relief system, we are predicting strong demand across the board for good property. The numbers of sales generated across prime Central London in May was very close to the 2014 level showing buyers have great confidence in the market for the foreseeable future.