2021 talking points

Looking forward to 2021 – what will the New Year bring in the local housing market?


In many ways 2020 was a year we might want to forget ever happened. Hopefully 2021 will see some sort of return to normality once vaccines are rolled out but, for now, we enter the New Year in Bath with Tier 3 restrictions in place. That will no doubt mean another round of uncertainty and disruption to many local industries which in turn may have an effect on the housing market.

Whilst life in the property market hasn’t been simple this year, we have been very lucky since Lockdown 1 in being able to operate with relatively few changes. However, we are fast approaching a normally hectic time in the market so what do we expect will be the first talking points of early 2021?


Stamp Duty deadline – the Chancellors SDLT holiday ends on Wednesday 31st March (you must have completed by that date in order to qualify) and, for those of you yet to agree a purchase, time is fast running out. The property industry has experienced severe delays in transactions in 2020 as solicitors, surveyors, lenders and agents have all been forced to adapt to various Covid protocols. This, combined with a huge spike in demand since Lockdown 1, means most sales are taking upwards of three months from offer accepted to completion.

Our advice – if you absolutely must complete by the deadline then prioritise no chain properties, get your legal/mortgage advisors ready to work before making an offer, state your requirements on timescales clearly and get ready to do a lot of chasing throughout the purchase.


Post SDLT deadline – our current most popularly asked question is “what will happen to prices after the deadline?”. Whilst we suspect some parts of the market will see price falls once the saving has ended, the supply and demand levels in Bath are unusual. Interest from both London and locals, combined with a continued lack of housing should see our area relatively unaffected price wise.

Covid has caused a large cohort of homebuyers to significantly re-assess their priorities on where to live/work and thus what kind of home to choose. If this trend away from big city living continues, the sought after Bath area will continue to benefit from this above average level of interest.

What happened with prices in 2020 and where will they go in the next year? – although tempting to consider, we think this kind of crystal ball gazing is best avoided!

To give you an example why, this week we looked back at most experts 2020 predictions which averaged out at around 2% growth. Despite the major disruptions of the last twelve months, Nationwide have just confirmed a 7.3% national average increase for 2020 and Zoopla have calculated that, across the UK as a whole, prices rose by an average of £10,177 in 2020 which equates to around 4%.

Happy New Year from the team at Madison Oakley

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