This is the fifth consecutive month that monthly valuations activity has exceeded that of the same month the year before, according to the latest research by Connells Survey and Valuation.
The growth in the number of valuations compared to Jan 2009 was led by current homeowners, who obtained 40% more valuations last month than in January 2009, while there was also a substantial increase in buy-to-let business, up 30%.
On the other hand, remortgage activity continues to languish, 28% lower than a year ago, while first-time buyer valuations were almost unchanged.
Ross Bowen, the managing director of Connells Survey and Valuation, says: “December and January are traditionally quiet months for the housing market, but valuation activity in December was buoyed by transactions completed by before the withdrawal of the higher Stamp-Duty threshold.
“This more positive trend was continued in January, with valuations up a tenth on a year ago. The positive start with transaction levels in January points to a continuing improvement in the housing market.”