Britain's biggest housebuilder Barratt Developments said sales had risen during July and August, giving the firm confidence it was "business as usual" since the June vote to leave the European Union. 

Property was one of the sectors hardest hit by the Brexit referendum, with shares in the biggest companies plunging after the vote. 

But after the initial shock the residential property market appears to be operating as normal. 

The group said today that forward sales of houses were up 4.1% for the first nine weeks of its financial year compared to the same time last year. 

That continued a pattern of strong growth for Barratt, which for the twelve months ended June 30, posted a 21% rise in pretax profit to £682.3m.

It attributed the increase to its disciplined volume growth in a market with an under supply of new homes. 

Barratt said it would continue to monitor the impact of the EU vote on Britain's economy and consumers, but said the start to the year had been encouraging and said it was confident in the fundamentals of the housing market for the coming year. 

That outlook echoed the view of smaller rival Redrow which yesterday said that sales climbed 8% since June 30. 

Barratt said that trading conditions in northern and central England had been stronger than those in the south of the country around the capital, reflecting what high-end London-focused housebuilder Berkeley said earlier this week. 

The region around London has felt the uncertainty brought by Brexit most keenly, as it is more exposed to foreign money, jobs in financial services and people buying homes as investments who have been hit this year by tax rises.