Paul Broadhead, Head of Mortgage Policy at BSA said: “With sentiment playing such an important role in the property market, the gradual increase in the numbers of people who believe it is a good time to buy bodes well for 2009. Also it is clear that increasing numbers of people believe that mortgage finance is more affordable than earlier in the year.”
This is supported by the survey finding that concerns about being able to pay the mortgage are receding, with just 37% of people viewing it as a problem, compared with 54% in September and 70% in July.
However, despite this good news for the property market, it is clear that the threat of a recession looms large and may hamper the market’s recovery in 2009. The lack of job security was identified as the major barrier to home purchase by 58% of respondents, compared to 28% in September and just 12% in June.
Paul Broadhead added: “Although buyers are increasingly optimistic about the future of the property market, it is clear that the threat of recession will mean that even these optimistic buyers will bide their time and wait to see what happens to both property prices and to the economy as a whole before they make their play.”
Against this background, it was not surprising that the average change in price predicted by most respondents for the next year was a fall of 8.6%.
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