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London’s residential market appears to be showing renewed signs of life thanks to the rollout of the government roadmap and vaccine - not to mention the stamp duty holiday extension.

London agency Chestertons says it’s seen a 20 per cent jump in the number of buyers entering the market and a 19 per cent increase in requests for property viewings in the first two weeks of March.

This jump in activity from new buyers follows a relatively subdued February as many waited for a decision on the stamp duty holiday and also an announcement on when the lockdown might end. 

As a result, Chestertons saw monthly buyer numbers down 17 per cent last month compared to February 2020 and requests for property viewings down 15 per cent.

Guy Gittins, chief executive of Chestertons, says: “While there is no doubt there are a lot of people very keen to move home, many didn’t feel comfortable starting the process until they had some idea of when the country might be out of lockdown. Once this was provided, we noticed an immediate uplift in new buyers registering with us, and the subsequent announcement confirming the extension of the stamp duty holiday only added to this.”

​​​​​He continues: “As the country emerges from lockdown, we expect moving home will be many people’s top priority; just as we saw after the first lockdown; and are therefore anticipating a very busy spring and summer market. 

“We currently have around 70 per cet more properties on the market for sale than we did last year. This is good news for buyers as it means that substantial price increases are relatively unlikely for the time being and that there are generally more homes to choose from.”