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Just as everyone seems to be using the word ‘recovery’ so Home.co.uk pours cold water on the housing market by saying affordability is probably worse than ever.

"Absolute demand has clearly not returned to pre-crisis levels. However, when we look at current demand relative to current supply, the impact on affordability is probably worse” says a spokesman.

“Government policy has served to stimulate demand and has done little to improve supply” says the site, which claims to maintain the most comprehensive database of UK residential properties advertised for sale and rent online.

In particular Home claims:

    - the overall total of properties for sale now stands 38 per cent lower than in January 2008;

    - average England and Wales asking prices are up 6.2 per cent on early 2013, a ‘post-crisis’ high;

    - London’s house price inflation is a whopping annual 14.7 per cent, while the north of England and Scotland prices have actually dropped slightly since mid-December.

“Add to this scenario the increasingly polarised nature of the UK housing market and we have a very volatile situation. Record low volumes of stock and the consequent restriction in market turnover are really beginning to bite hard” it says.

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