Richard Pike, sales and marketing director at Phoebus Software:

“The numbers today tell quite a story, firstly of shifting stamp duty deadlines and, secondly, the emergence from Covid restrictions. The initial rush to get transactions over the line before 31st March had a huge impact driving transaction numbers up. Whereas, compared to April last year, when the first lockdown had a massive dampening effect, the numbers year on year show the market is thriving.

“Despite the rise in property prices reported by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this week, the appetite in the housing market continues unabated. With just over a month to go until the end of the stamp duty holiday the push to beat another deadline is definitely underway.

“However, as the deadline approaches and conveyancers are put under pressure, to finalise transactions, the numbers for May and June are likely to mirror those in March. The fear was that the market would take a nose-dive at the end of the holiday, but with so many transactions already in the pipeline, that fear could be unfounded. Many people are looking to move away from major towns and cities since the pandemic and the stamp duty holiday may not be the only driver for the current increased demand.”