You are here: Home - News -

UK house sales subdued but market remains stable – RICS

by: Mortgage Solutions
  • 12/05/2017
  • 0
UK house sales subdued but market remains stable – RICS
Momentum is continuing to ebb in the UK housing market as sales dip slightly and buyer interest remains flat in April, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

It found that new instructions continued to drop in April, and puts this down to uncertainty due to the calling of an early election and the ramifications of Stamp Duty changes.

The lack of choice for would-be buyers across the UK is still a key issue, said RICS, and in April new instructions remained negative for a fourteenth month in a row at the national level leaving average properties on estate agents books hovering close to record lows.

Demand flat

New buyer enquiries were unchanged nationally having failed to see any meaningful growth since November 2016. Alongside this stagnant buyer demand, respondents reported agreed sales were beginning to slip slightly following a number of months of flat transactions.

This flat picture for sales at the national level is expected to continue over the next three months, while the twelve-month outlook is more optimistic with 31% more respondents anticipating a pick-up in sales over the year ahead at the national level.

Prices robust

Despite the subdued backdrop, 22% more respondents saw prices rising in April, (unchanged from March), underpinned by the lack of stock. As such, house prices continue to rise nationally, with the pace of growth steady over the last five months, although there is variation across the UK.

In central London, the indicator on prices has been in negative territory for 13 months. In addition, price growth has eased noticeably in in East Anglia recently and, along with the North East, had not seen any increase in April.

At the other end of the scale, in the North West 67% more respondents noted higher (rather than lower) prices in April with the reading having been above 50% in this part of the country in each of the last seven months.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, said: “Although the picture clearly does vary across the country, the bulk of the feedback we are receiving points to a fairly flat summer for both activity and prices.

“Lack of stock on the market remains a key challenge for the sector with recent and forthcoming tax changes having a material impact on transaction levels, particularly at higher price points.

“Uncertainty relating to the forthcoming general election is also highlighted by some respondents as a reason for inertia.”

There are 0 Comment(s)

You may also be interested in

Business Skills

In this section, we offer short ‘how to’ guides on harder to crack areas of business. From social media, to regulation or niche product areas, we cover it all.

Profiles

Our journalists interview key industry entrepreneurs, strategists and commentators for day-to-day market insight and a strategic view of where the industry is heading. We offer lessons for success and explore the opportunities for your business

Success in Practice

Here, we share case studies fleshing out best practice to help you decide what could work for your business. Take a look at how others approached complex tasks like launching a new mortgage lender, advising on a new product area or deciding to specialise in another. Learn from others mistakes and triumphs.

Marketwatch

Each week, we ask top mortgage and property commentators with a unique perspective to examine a key news headline, market move or regulatory or political issue.

Poll

Vote in our weekly poll here. It’s your chance to tell us what you think and be heard on the top news stories of the week. Review our archive to find out what your industry really thinks and all our coverage of the results.

Top Comments

Be part of the conversation on Mortgage Solutions. We want to hear from you. We have a tool called Disqus to tell us which stories get the most comments each week. Every Friday, the team picks the most thoughtful or opinionated contributions from our readers to enjoy again. Don’t forget to share your favourite stories from the site on social media to keep the conversation going.

Read previous post:
Landlords add £15.9bn to economy, study shows

The UK economy could lose as much as £500m as a result of landlords cutting back on spending, a study...

Close