Housing Market Recovery ‘Round The Corner’

According to the latest housing market report by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) there are signs a recovery is “round the corner”.

The West Midlands and the North East, areas which Rics said have “suffered more than most” since the market crash, experienced the biggest increases in buyer activity in July.

And growth in buyer numbers was seen across the UK as the upswing in activity, which has been particularly concentrated in London and the South East, spread outwards.

Around 53% more surveyors reported increases rather than falls in demand.

As buyer numbers strengthened, prices rose across the country for the fourth month in a row, growing at their fastest rate since the market peak of November 2006, Rics said.

Looking ahead, a balance of 35% more surveyors expect prices to continue their increase rather than fall, while 53% more surveyors expect sales to rise over the next three months.

Peter Bolton King, Rics global residential director, said: “It is clearly good news that those parts of the property market that were struggling are at last showing some signs of life.”

Lenders, estate agents and property websites have been reporting big uplifts in activity this year following the launch of various Government schemes to unblock the housing market.

More first-time buyers have been seen entering the market and sellers also appear to be more confident about sticking close to their asking prices amid improved mortgage availability.

But fears have been raised that the initiatives must not lead to a property bubble.

Particular concerns have been raised about a Government scheme called Help to Buy, which will underwrite £130bn of low-deposit mortgage lending with state guarantees from next year.