The latest quarterly Property and Homemover Report from data firm TwentyCI suggested that while exchanges and house prices were down on a quarterly basis, this could be explained away as the summer lull.
Instead, it emphasised that the annual progress – exchanges up by more than 15%, while house prices grew by 1.5% – was a sign that the “the unpredictable market that emerged in the wake of the Brexit vote is starting to settle down”.
Scotland and Wales have seen the biggest increase in exchanges, with a 30% jump year-on-year. In contrast, the south west has seen them drop 6% compared to last year, while the east of England is the only region to buck the summer slowdown with a 6% quarterly increase.
Online estate agents grow
Colin Bradshaw, chief customer officer at TwentyCI, said: “Last year’s volatile market is starting to subside as people begin to experience ‘Brexit fatigue’ and are getting on with their lives. The drop in house prices compared to the previous quarter is likely to be due in part to the slowing economy, and concerns about the potential rise of interest rates on top of the usual summer slowdown.”
The report also highlights the growing influence of online estate agents, with digital agents increasing their market share by 19% over the past 12 months. Nonetheless, they still represent just 5% of the overall market.
Bradshaw added: “The growth in online estate agents is testament to the power of advertising. We’ve seen the big players spending huge sums on TV and radio promotion. As the concept of online estate agents matures and consumers see more of their boards on display it is likely that more people will see them as a credible alternative.”