First quarter of 2016 saw 10% more transactions than previous record

First quarter of 2016 saw 10% more transactions than previous record [Photo: Richard Sharrocks via iStock]

Earlier this year, there was a flurry of activity from landlords who were looking to invest in the property market before the new three per cent Stamp Duty tax levy announced by the chancellor came into play in the early part of April.

A new report has confirmed that the swelling in demand this caused from investors looking for new rental properties meant that there were more transactions carried out in the first quarter of this year than there were in the first three months of any year since records began. 

Some 275,002 transactions took place in the period between January and March this year, according to the findings published this week by Search Acumen. It said that this reading was a total of ten per cent higher than the quarter that came before, and was also higher than any other January to March period recorded.

The data from Search Acumen in its latest index also shows that in the three-month period, there were 15 per cent more transactions carried out than there were in the same quarter at the start of 2015. 

The previous record came in 2014, when there was a swelling in market activity caused by the Mortgage Market Review, which was set to make it harder for people to get a mortgage from April of that year. It meant that thousands of people made an effort to get onto the ladder before the recommendations from the review came into effect of April of that year. 

"Conveyancers’ services have been in high demand so far this year as buyers of second homes and buy to let properties have created a stampede to beat the April 2016 stamp duty deadline," said Mark Riddick, chairman of Search Acumen.

This quarterly record, when compared to the similar rise that was experienced in 2014, shows just how governmental behaviour and policy can affect the market and make people react in certain ways.