Pent-up demand is spurring on the house market like spring sunshine is bringing trees into leaf.

According to Rightmove, the number of inquiries about each property on agents’ books in March was a record 34 per cent higher than the same time last year when the first lockdown threatened to knock the market for six but didn’t.

Tim Bannister, the online property website’s data director reckons this is the best time for house sales for ten years.

“The number of buyers inquiring about each property for sale on Rightmove is the highest ever measured,” he announced this week.

The momentum is largely due to the extension of the stamp duty holiday until the end of June.

For househunters in safe jobs the outlook is tempting. Rightmove says lenders will be re-introducing five per cent deposit mortgages this month backed by government guarantees. The escape-to-the-country movement has slackened off since the height of the pandemic but demand for more space inside and out is still considerable.

Tom Bill, head of UK residential research at Knight Frank says buyers post lockdown are looking for a spot to give them the best of both worlds: town and country. Buckinghamshire has that in spades.

This is why the Great Missenden office of Hamptons International is staging a virtual roadshow on April 27 aimed at helping townies smell the roses in the Buckinghamshire countryside.

Guest speakers will include Giles Kline, executive editor of Country Life and Melanie Sanderson, managing editor of The Good Schools Guide.

One of the country homes on Hamptons books this Easter is The Mill House on the edge of the village of Prestwood. Its name is derived from an early 19th Century smock mill, part of which occupied the site in days gone by. It provided the foundations for the double garage in the picture and maybe the house as well. The owners aren’t sure.

Although The Mill House still has some original windows and oak doors, the accommodation has grown over 200 years. Today there are six bedrooms, five bathrooms, three reception rooms., a 29ft kitchen with separate utility and a cellar.

The living area includes a self contained annexe with its own entrance from the road. There’s also a room above the double garage with scope to be used as an office and/or games room.

The gardens front and back are lovely. One of the horticultural highlights is the Indian bean tree.

There’s also a vegetable patch and sun terrace where you can sit and enjoy the scenery and think about the fresh fruit and veg you’ll harvest for supper.

Julie Radford and her family have lived here for seven years. “There’s a special feel about this house,” she says. However they no longer have need for six bedrooms and five bathrooms so they’re downsizing. The agents are inviting offers over £1.625 million for this semi rural paradise half an hour’s train journey from London.

n To register interest in Hamptons virtual roadshow, visit