Thursday, 24 April 2014

UK housing market 'to stage a recovery'

The UK housing market is expected to stage a recovery in the last quarter of the year.

The latest survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors found that confidence in future sales was at its highest level for more than two years following government initiatives to stimulate the house buying market.

In September, 26 per cent more respondents to the monthly survey said they expected transactional activity to increase in the last three months of 2012 rather than decrease. It is the highest net balance since May 2010.

The continuing drop in house prices is also expected to slow. While more respondents believe that prices will continue to come down rather than rise, the gap between negative and positive predictions was at its lowest for six months. Only 9 per cent more surveyors believed that prices would fall than rise.

Last month, a net balance of 15 percent more surveyors reported falls rather than rises, the best reading since the spring.

Most parts of the UK also saw a slight increase in enquiries from potential buyers, while the number of homes coming onto the market during September remained fairly flat, as five percent more respondents claimed that supply had risen rather than fallen.

Peter Bolton King, global residential director at RICS, said: ‘The housing market was relatively flat during September but surveyors are optimistic that the run in to Christmas could see an increase in activity in many areas of the country. Prices are still dipping but at a much lower rate than seen in previous months.

‘Despite this, problems still exist and more needs to be done to get the market moving. Unrealistic expectations on the part of vendors seem to be stalling the transaction process.

‘Meanwhile, although the funding for lending scheme appears to be improving mortgage availability, those at the very bottom of the housing ladder are still struggling.’

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