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House sales and first-time buyers rise but supply gap widens

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  • 25/07/2017
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House sales and first-time buyers rise but supply gap widens
House sales rose in June but the gap between supply and demand is widening, the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) said today.

The number of sales agreed per branch rose to 11 in June, up from 10 in May, the NAEA’s housing report said. The proportion of sales to first-time buyers was 30% – the highest amount since January.

Demand for housing remained strong, as the number of house hunters registered per estate agent branch increased by 10% to 384 per branch, compared with 350 in May. This is 16% higher than June 2016, when there were 330 potential buyers registered per branch.

However the gap between supply and demand is growing. The number of properties available per branch dropped to 37 in June, from 40 in May.

The shortage of supply is currently not pushing prices above asking price – only 2% of properties sold for more than asking price in June, compared with 3% in May. By contrast, the number of homes which sold for less than asking price rose to 79% last month – up 2% from May.

Mark Hayward (pictured), chief executive of NAEA Propertymark, said: “In May, we saw a period of political uncertainty, with new buyers stalling their house search until after the election. In June however, it seems the market has bounced back, with the number of house hunters rising.

“Although we have seen a decrease in the number of houses available per branch, we have seen a rise in the number of sales – which is typical of this time of year as buyers and sellers push through their property transactions ahead of the quieter summer months.”

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