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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

More market woe as sales to first time buyers plummet to three-year low

Sales of properties to first time buyers have hit their lowest level for three years according to data from the National Association of Estate Agents.

Whereas sales to FTBs were strong in the early summer - 29 and 30 per cent respectively in June and July - by August (the latest data available) the figure dropped significantly to just 20 per cent.

This is the lowest recorded since August 2015 when, again, 20 per cent of sales were made to first timers.

Meanwhile in August this year the number of house hunters registered per NAEA member branch actually rose by six per cent on July, up from 303 to 320. 

Year on year, however, demand is down seven per cent as there were 343 prospective house hunters registered on estate agents’ books in August 2017.

The number of properties available to buy fell for the first time since April this year, from 41 per branch in July to 40 in August; the number of sales agreed per branch increased marginally in August – from eight to nine.

“In September, buyers typically storm the market in a bid to complete sales in time for Christmas. However, it looks like this year’s heatwave encouraged more house-hunters to stay at home in August and continue their searches, which has in turn increased competition and pushed FTBs out of negotiations” reports Mark Hayward, chief executive of NAEA Propertymark.

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