15th February 2016
Despite the fact that stamp duty changes provided a savings fillip for many home movers and rising house prices helping to increase equity levels for many, the number of people moving house in 2015 actually edged back.
Research from Lloyds Bank showed that 365,000 moved home during the year, slightly behind the 366,400 who moved during the previous 12 months.
Whilst the 2015 levels are 16% higher than the 2009 market low of 315,800, they are just half of the 2006 peak level of 712,000.
Average prices up by a third
Over the past five years, the average price paid by homemovers has grown by 30% from £210,252 in 2010, to £273,4912 in 2015 – an increase of £63,239, equivalent to a monthly increase of £1,054.
This was a marginally faster rise than the increase in average house prices across the whole market.
The typical deposit put down by a homemover has increased by 22% in the past five years, from £74,649 in 2010 to £91,020 in 2015, equivalent to 33% of the average price paid by home movers.
London unsurprisingly continues to see stronger growth than the rest of the UK, as average prices paid by home movers in the capital have increased by 51% to £515,004 in the past five years.
Those in the capital also put down the largest average deposits – £183,353, which is 36% of the average property value.
At the other end of the scale, Northern Ireland saw the average price paid by a homemover drop 4% to £157,368, and also the smallest average deposit of £43,380.
Stamp duty changes save homemovers average of £5,000
Stamp duty changes, introduced in December 20146, provided homemovers across the UK with a boost by providing buyers with an average saving £4,530 on purchases.
But the largest savings last year were made by homemovers in East Anglia, where someone buying at the average price of £255,028 paid £2,751 in stamp duty fees compared to £7,650 before the change – a difference of £4,899.
Buyers in three other regions also made substantial savings of over £2,500; London – saving £4,850, the South West- saving £4,654 and the South East – saving £2,767.
Andrew Mason, Lloyds Bank mortgages director, said: “The 2015 stamp duty changes, low mortgage rates and rising real pay growth, provided more favourable conditions for homemovers in 2015, although that hasn’t translated to any increase in numbers.
”2015 brought good news to homemovers. We might have expected the change to the stamp duty structure to have resulted in a greater numbers.
“The ongoing increase in house prices throughout the year will have been especially welcomed by those who bought at the peak of house prices, who have been looking to rebuild their equity in order to make their next move.”