Richard Pike, sales and marketing director at Phoebus Software:

“As was expected the figures for February show the push to get transactions over the line before the original SDLT holiday deadline. However, the landscape changed again with the Budget and the market is likely to continue on its upward trajectory. With the mortgage guarantee scheme, higher LTV products, and lower rates, there is little to hold it back.

“However, despite furlough and other government schemes to help, for many the toll of the past year is still to be fully seen. Although FCA guidance is still asking lenders to continue to consider repossession as a last resort, once the ban is lifted, the likelihood of repossessions rising in the second half of 2021 is almost inevitable. Lenders will have to be on the ball and work with borrowers to minimise this risk.

“It’s exactly one year since the first national lockdown came into force and, now that over half of the adult population have had their first vaccination, we can at last look forward with a little more hope. Even if it is with a touch of trepidation.”