Bradford & Bingley recorded a 1% fall in average house prices at the start of November compared with September, quashing fears of a looming housing recession. Research from the estate agent showed that the property market is not in the dire straits experts had initially thought and the economic situation is not having too much of a bearing on house prices.
Ian Davies, regional business director at Bradford & Bingley, said: ‘We expect there to be a further degree of caution among buyers moving forward as they wait to see how the economic situation pans out. But, if you are thinking about selling, rest assured that buyers are still out there and they are making decisions fast.’
The research collated from each of the Bradford & Bingley branches showed that properties sold at the start of November are receiving on average 96% of the asking price, compared with 97% in September and properties are actually being sold at a faster rate now than in previous months.
Davies said: ‘People are continuing to take advantage of great mortgage deals, following recent interest rate cuts. The marked difference is that demand in the market is now largely made up of serious buyers who need to move, rather than those making an aspirational purchase.’
There were regional differences on the final selling prices of property, with homes in the South East receiving more than those in the North. However, home owners in the South East believe house prices have been affected by the economic situation more than those in the North, with figures 75% and 16% respectively.
Davies does not deny a slowdown in property prices but remains optimistic on the outlook. He said: ‘What we are seeing, and four out of five branches up and down the country agree, is that house prices are slowing and this has been happening throughout the summer. Asking prices are unlikely to rise significantly in the short term, but rest assured we are not seeing a widespread falling back of value.’