New homes

Harlow Housing Market And Stamp Duty Analysis

September 23rd 2021

With the stamp duty holiday now in a tapering off period, it is inevitable that people are keen to determine if it was a success or not.

At Intercounty, we pay close attention to what is happening nationally, and locally. There is no denying the Harlow market has been impacted by the stamp duty holiday. We’ve worked closely with many buyers and vendors in the past year, and we have seen its influence at first-hand.

What is happening in the Harlow housing market?

According to Rightmove, as of the end of August 2021, the Harlow housing market can be described as such:

Properties in Harlow had an overall average price of £336,827 over the last year.

The majority of sales in Harlow during the last year were terraced properties, selling for an average price of £293,158. Semi-detached properties sold for an average of £381,705, with detached properties fetching £513,584.

Overall, sold prices in Harlow over the last year were 7% up on the previous year and 6% up on the 2017 peak of £318,294.”

House prices have risen in Harlow, no doubt in part because of the heightened demand for homes, and of course, this is partly (if not largely) down to the stamp duty holiday.

With the stamp duty holiday tapering off period now in effect, it is natural for the industry to begin analysing its impact. One of the leading property portals in the country has looked at the stamp duty holiday impact.

What does Zoopla think about the stamp duty holiday?

Key takeaways listed by Zoopla on this matter include:

  • The amount of tax paid by people buying a new home has nearly doubled despite the tax relief brought in by the government due to Covid-19

  • Buyers paid a total of £2.06bn in stamp duty in the 3 months to the end of June - 90% more than in the same period of 2020

  • Only 37% of people buying a home paid stamp duty during the period, compared with 64% a year earlier, and yet the value of the tax collected almost doubled

Significant statistics of the end of the full stamp duty holiday period

  • In the three months to the end of June 2021, there was a 175% increase in property transactions

  • 59,600 properties were purchased at a price of more than £50,000 in the three months to June 2021, which is significantly higher than the 13,000 bought at this price in the three months leading to June 2020

  • An additional £485 was spent by people who purchased buy-to-let property or a second home, with the 3% surcharge not being covered by the stamp duty holiday

  • A new surcharge of 2% was imposed (on 1st April) on overseas buyers purchasing a home in England or the North of Ireland, raising £19m

Calls for stamp duty to be scrapped

Alexander Hammond of the Institute of Economic Affairs has told the Express newspaper that the duty causes so many distortions in the market the government should consider axing it.

Alexander Hammond of the Institute of Economic Affairs spoke to the Express newspaper, saying; “Policies such as stamp duty land tax make purchasing a home more expensive and, as it penalises people moving houses, it acts as a disincentive for older people in bigger homes to downsize. Partly as a consequence of this distortive policy, more than 50 per cent of UK households are under-occupied.”

Alexander Hammond continued by saying; “The stamp duty holiday for homes under £500,000 ended on June 30, however, the popularity of the policy coupled with harmful impact the tax has on our society means the permanent scrapping of stamp duty land tax should be considered.”

Hammond has also called for planning laws with respect to house building to be relaxed, and he said; “The unaffordability of houses today represents a colossal failure of government policy that is having a damaging impact on our society. A record 42 percent of adults under 34 live with their parents, a further 60 percent of those under 44 noted the high cost of housing has delayed them achieving big life goals such as marriage, and there’s even evidence that high house prices are adversely impacting the UK’s fertility rates.”

For property enquiries in Harlow, please feel free to call us on 01279 639666 or why not email us at With considerable experience in the local market, and free valuation services, we look forward to helping you move