A LAW firm in Bury says the property market might be returning to pre-pandemic levels of interest.

But experts at Clough & Willis believe the government could still do more to kickstart the market.

Estate agents and solicitors had seen the residential property sector grind to a halt when lockdown restrictions came in last March.

Lorraine Stratton-Webb, head of property at the Manchester Road company, said: "The past few months have been tough for the residential conveyancing sector, but things are looking much brighter.

"We have seen a big upturn in new enquiries, whilst matters that were on hold are now starting to proceed at full steam.

"There has also been a real impetus from buyers and sellers who want to get transactions across the line. Confidence is there along with a determination to get moving.”

She says that the 'hotspots' of Summerseat, Hawkshaw, Tottington, Lowercroft, Greenmount and Ramsbottom are particularly strong and are seeing the majority of the renewed activity.

One major obstacle has been the number of solicitors who have been on furlough, as lawyers look to get deals across the line. This trend is now falling away.

More could be done though, says Lorraine, to stimulate the housing market now.

She added: "I understand this is a one in a generation challenge, but the government needs to explore every avenue to ensure the property market is strong as it can possibly be.

"One thing they could do is drop the additional stamp duty provision which would give a jolt to the market.

"The other option is to possibly reduce or put a hold on stamp duty altogether. The idea of a stamp duty holiday has been floated and this could be of real value if it were to be implemented.”