February sees sellers return to housing market

The number of house hunters registering with an agent across the country also rose to 268 reported in February compared with 252 in January per branch – the highest level for seven months.

Sales increased across the property market in February, growing from an average of 6 to 8 per branch month on month, despite continuing consumer concern regarding interest rate rises.

The percentage of sales made to first time buyers also increased slightly from 24 per cent in January to 25 per cent in February.

NAEA President Michael Jones said:

“To see such a significant boost in activity amongst sellers compared with this time last year is encouraging news for the UK property market. The signs are that they are being more realistic about the price they can expect to achieve when they put their house on the market. This means that, on the whole, supply can meet demand levels, meaning a more stable market, for the short term at least.

“However, the picture is still very variable across the UK with agents reporting much higher growth in enquiries and stock availability in some regions than others. Undoubtedly, broader economic constraints on spending continue to impact on consumer confidence, especially at a First Time Buyer level, and the effect of the public sector cuts has yet to be fully felt. With limited mortgage availability and the concern about a likely rise in interest rates still putting off many of the people who otherwise would be looking to buy, it is important that the government does everything it can to encourage growth at this crucial stage of the recovery process.”

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