Economy

United Kingdom housing market is grinding to a halt, report surveyors

United Kingdom housing market is grinding to a halt, report surveyors

More expensive homes are under significant downward price pressure, with 70 per cent of surveyors reporting that offers for homes in the £1m plus bracket are coming in below asking price. "We can also see from the report that new sales instructions have fallen yet again, meaning a continued shortage of properties in many areas".

House sale levels are flat or falling across large swathes of the United Kingdom as the market slows, surveyors have reported.

There was also a slight increase in new listings coming to the market in October, after deterioration in the first half of the year.

Looking at house prices, the survey showed a balance of 1% more surveyors reporting a price rise nationally rather than a fall - which Rics said indicates a flat price trend generally across the UK. Whilst this figure mirrors the national price trend, it's important to acknowledge the regional fluctuation.

Respondents in London are continuing to report a decline in prices, with 63% more respondents reporting a fall rather than rise over the month, the poorest reading since 2009. Although East Anglia and the North East showed a more positive picture, the figures were still in negative territory.

"RICS suggests that the divergent picture we've seen over the last few months is still evident, with house price gains in the North West, Scotland and Northern Ireland, yet prices cooling in London and the South East".

Last month, the national price net balance was recorded at 1%, softening from 6% in both August and September. However, in 10 out of the 12 regions respondents expected house prices to rise over this period.

Surveyors were also asked about how selling prices are comparing with asking prices.

More news: Trade sends Bledsoe to Bucks

Data from RICS showed that 62 per cent of respondents said sale prices were below asking prices for homes valued between £500,000 and £1m. That's up from 57% in July. For those marketed in excess of £1 million, just under three-quarters of contributors stated that the accepted price was below the original figure.

In the lettings market, tenant demand was flat for the three months to October while new landlord instructions remained in decline. However, their collective 12-month outlook has turned negative.

'The combination of the increased cost of moving, a lack of fresh stock coming to the market, uncertainly over the political climate and now an interest rate hike appears to be taking its toll on activity in the housing market, ' said Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist. "With both buyer enquiries slipping and sales expectations also subdued, the sense is that home owners are staying put". A stagnant second hand market is bad news for the wider economy, not just in terms of spending but also because it restricts mobility, ' he explained.

United Kingdom residential property price falls are spreading from London and the south east, according to a new report Thursday.

However, other indicators have suggested a stabilisation in the housing market recently.

The RICS survey is a good guide to other measures of construction industry activity.

"Continued political and economic uncertainty is negatively influencing the market place", agreed Davis Lewis, a Devon surveyor.


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