Brexit may be continuing to dominate the headlines - try to stifle that yawn - but there is still a housing market with buyers and sellers remaining active.
That’s the view of the National Association of Estate Agents after the release of its figures for December which shows that during the month the supply of available housing increased by a fifth from an average 35 per NAEA member in November to 42 last month.
This is the highest level seen for the month of December since 2014.
Meanwhile last month the number of house hunters registered per branch increased by eight per cent, from an average of 282 in November to 304.
Year-on-year, demand is up 13 per cent, from 268 in December 2017.
The number of properties sold to first time buyers increased marginally from 23 per cent in November to 24 per cent last month. Year-on-year however, the number of sales made to this group are down from 32 per cent.
Meanwhile the number of sales agreed per member branch fell from nine in September, eight in October, seven in November and five in December: this is in line with seasonal trends as it’s the lowest this figure has been since December 2017, when it was also five.
“Despite the current political climate, people still want to move. There is movement in the market with demand from house hunters up 13 per cent year-on-year, and the supply of available properties also rising. Although the number of sales agreed hit a 12-month low, this is something we always see in December, with Christmas festivities typically taking priority over any plans to buy or sell” explains Mark Hayward, chief executive of NAEA Propertymark.
“While many are adopting a ‘wait and see’ strategy until there’s further clarity over what Brexit might mean for the market, there is choice for those who want to buy now, and there are people on the market looking for new homes.”