Housing market activity falls, says RICS
Buying and selling in the housing market has continued to fall despite the introduction of the government’s Newbuy initiative, according to figures from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
RICS’ latest housing market survey found an imbalance between demand and supply, which is being compounded by the ongoing difficulties many buyers are experiencing with mortgage finance, resulting in a drop in sales in July.
Despite the introduction of the government’s Newbuy initiative, which allows lenders to supply 90 to 95 per cent mortgages for home buyers, activity has continued to fall away after a stronger start to the year.
The RICS survey found 5 per cent of chartered surveyors reported falls in demand in July.
But the amount of new properties coming onto the market continued to drop off during July, as fewer vendors looked to test the summer market, with 15 per cent more chartered surveyors reporting falling supply.
Prices across the UK continued to edge lower last month, with survey respondents noting that a general lack of consumer confidence continues to weigh heavy on the market.
Looking ahead, surveyors were cautiously optimistic that transaction levels should improve over the coming three months.
Peter Bolton King, global residential director at RICS, said: ‘Despite the terrible weather seen in many parts of the county last month, a steady number of potential buyers still got out there to test the market. However, this didn’t result in a higher level of actual transactions.
‘Fewer sellers are putting their homes up for sale and the ongoing problem of accessing affordable finance is not helping. If vendors want to sell their homes quickly, they will have to be realistic in their price expectations.’