The market strengthens

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A chartered surveyors in Portsmouth has recorded a surge in demand as the property market strengthens following the general election last month.

McAndrew Martin said the uplift in residential surveys and property-related services over the past weeks comes after uncertainty over the election result ended with a majority result at the polls.

The 24-strong firm has continued to report growth in its surveys work with a 40 per cent increase over the past year as well as requests for quick turnaround times amid increased competition for properties.

Stamp Duty reforms and new pension freedoms which are set to inject capital into the buy-to-let market are also expected to have a positive impact this year, as well as record low interest and mortgage rates and the cost of living falling to the lowest since 1960, when rock ‘n’ roll legend Elvis Presley had a hit with It’s Now Or Never.

Ian Lee, a director at McAndrew Martin, said: ‘We have registered a strong start to the year and have noticed market confidence grow since the election.

‘The demand for our surveys has continued to rise with a 40 per cent increase over the past year and the need for fast turnaround times for reports has become more apparent as housebuyers face increased competition for properties.

‘We should see the benefit of stamp duty and pension reforms in the longer term, particularly in the buy-to-let market, although the new government must ensure that it gets to grips with the pressing need for more new homes.’

Latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that the construction sector was improving after a slow start to 2015, with output rising 3.9 per cent in March compared with the month before.

Ian added: ‘We have seen increased activity in construction and for our building related services. T

‘The new figures are encouraging and we need to ensure that this growth is sustained through 2015 both in house building and commercial developments.’

The ONS also released statistics showing a 7.4 per cent increase in house prices for March compared with February, meaning the cost of an average UK home is £273,000 and £339,000 in the south east.

Property analyst Hometrack placed year-on-year growth to March 2015 at 6.7 per cent, with the average price of a home in Portsmouth at £193,200.

McAndrew Martin, which is based at the Fairway Business Centre, covers Portsmouth, the south-east and London.

As well as surveys, it provides legal services, boundary work, architectural design, building conservation, fire risk assessments and property-related services for sectors including construction. It also has a land and new homes division.

Earlier this year, the company launched a recruitment drive for apprentices, surveyors and asset taggers to carry out inventories at properties and provide property services support.

It acquired Brunel Design Services and Veness Chartered Surveyors in 2014, its 25th anniversary year.