House sales picked up sharply in March as stamp duty holiday was extended

House sales picked up sharply in March amid signs that the extension of a stamp duty holiday had an immediate impact on the housing market, according to surveyors. A net balance of 50% of property professionals reported an increase rather than a decrease in agreed sales, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) said. It marked the strongest sales surge since last August. A stamp duty holiday had been due to end on March 31, but this was extended in the recent Budget. The stamp duty “nil rate” band will now not revert to normal levels until the autumn. The current stamp duty threshold under the holiday … (full story)

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