It sounds like the house market has kicked off the new year in overdrive.

Rightmove says the first working week of 2022 was the busiest on record.

Calls to estate agents by potential buyers asking about homes for sale were 15 per cent up on the same period last year. There was also an increase in requests for valuations of owners’ existing properties. By Monday this week the average number of available properties per estate agency branch had dropped to a record low of 12.

A recent survey by a group with offices across the country found that more than 50 per cent of purchasers had decided to buy their future home based on their first visit.

“Any experienced estate agent would say that. No-one needs a survey to tell them that,” scoffed Tim Russ, one of the best known senior figures in the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, with offices in Bucks and Oxfordshire. “Even as they walk up to the front door for the first time, a percentage of buyers make the decision to buy or not.”

Initial impressions are crucial, emphasises the marketing expert.

Why are such important decisions made in no more than moments? “Because for most buyers, a home must feel right,” said Mr Russ. “It can have the correct number of rooms, the right amount of space, face the right directions and have dozens of other desirable features, including being priced correctly, but if it doesn’t feel right, it’s not right and a buyer can detect that in seconds.”

He added “Early indications this year are that there is no let-up in demand but stocks remain low, keeping pressure on values and pushing up prices in many areas, making this a particularly good time to sell.”

Researchers commissioned by Savills have compiled list of the most desirable villages to live in based on a combination of lifestyle amenities, transport connections, ‘chocolate-box’ appeal and house prices.

The top four villages in Bucks are Chesham Bois in fourth place (average house price: £1,046,825), Fulmer, third, average price for a property here: £1,099,736; Penn, runner up, average price: £1,117,839 and, cue for a drum roll for the overall winner of the village with the greatest pulling power in the county when houses come up for sale: in number one spot is Turville, the picture postcard beauty spot on the Oxfordshire/Bucks border where box office hits including The Vicar of Dibley, Chitty, Chitty Bang Bang, Midsomer Murders and Goodnight Mr Tom were filmed.

Latest average price for a home in the village where new stars can join the firmament: £1,463,240.