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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Prices to fall slightly for next six months, warns RICS

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors says house price sentiment improved by a small amount last month for the first time since July.

But it warns of difficult times ahead with prices likely to fall in the coming months as Brexit uncertainty goes on.

RICS’ monthly house price balance moved gently up to -24 in March from -27 in February, which was the lowest reading since May 2011.

However sales remain weak following an eighth successive month of falling inquiries from buyers.

The average time it takes to sell a property remains unchanged at 19 weeks, the joint longest period since RICS started recording the data in 2017. 

The longest it takes to sell a home is in the south east of England, at 21.5 weeks on average.

“Brexit remains a major drag on activity in the market with anecdotal evidence pointing to potential buyers being reluctant to commit in the face of the heightened sense of uncertainty,” RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn says.

“Whether any deal provides the shift in mood music envisaged by many respondents to the survey remains to be seen, but as things stand, there is little encouragement to be drawn from key RICS lead indicators. We expect transactions to decline on this basis” he warns.

“Arguably more significant still are the signs that developers are continuing to adopt a more cautious stance with the trend in new residential starts now flatlining. Against this backdrop, there is little possibility of delivering the uplift in supply necessary to address the ongoing housing crisis.”

  • Andrew Stanton Estate Agency Insights Strategies

    I am not sure why levels of transactions should fall, if agents educate vendors, for some it is a great time to move, sell for a little less and buy a larger property for a little less, and in fact the cost of move is less than it would have been in autumn 2017 the peak of house prices.

    Agents are in the market for the long haul, outside factors, interest rate rises, wars, change of governments, stamp duty etc all play a part, but the population is growing and people need to buy homes, so there is always a market. Typically for the past several years there are between 1 to 1.2M completions a year, that is a big cake of sales for everyone,

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