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Written by rosalind renshaw

The housing market as a whole looks to be going nowhere, according to this morning’s Hometrack report.

Prices tiptoed down by just 0.1% over the last month. New applicant numbers rose by 1.1% and property listings increased by 1.9% compared with the month before.

Patchy regional differences mean that in 8% of postcodes – primarily London ones – there have been price increases, but in 27% there have been price falls.

Hometrack director of research Richard Donnell said: “Almost four years into the downturn, the housing market is showing signs of adapting to a low turnover environment.

“Despite a general improvement in the balance of supply and demand over recent months, headline prices remain on an a downward trend and are likely to fall further over the coming months. With sales volumes holding up, there is no impetus for any material change in prices.”

He added: “Both sellers and buyers have become more accepting of realistic pricing.”

For June, Hometrack had reported a 10.7% increase in sales agreed, but after a particularly slow period in April and May, and wondered whether this would be sustained.

It has not really had an answer, as while sales agreed did improve in July, the rate slowed to 9.4%.

Nor has time on market really changed, now standing at 9.4 weeks, while the percentage of asking price achieved has been unchanged for three months, at around 92.7%.

The Hometrack index is a sentiment report, rather than one that delves into facts and statistics. It asks just 11 questions of its participants, but does not supply information as to the proportion of unsold properties versus those that do sell. Nor does it give information as to fall-throughs on sales agreed.


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    J Clarksrom it's not the mortgage products but asking prices that are killing the market.

    There are plenty of good sensible mortgage products out there. Now if people priced right there wouldn't be an issue.

    A return to irresponsible lending, low deposits and happy thought is not the solution.

    If the bubble prices would be allowed to deflate, with good mortgage products then transactions would increase dramatically.

    • 25 July 2011 14:38 PM
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    We are litterally selling "some houses"

    Is time these people started talking the job up.

    There are more mortgage products out there, if transaction levels improve then the whole country benefits.

    That said I am not sure of many people who feel confident enough to get out there and buy, let alone have the deposit etc, but it is a self defeating scenrario

    • 25 July 2011 13:58 PM
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    Remember Hometrack Notrack, it's not the winning; it's the taking part that counts...

    • 25 July 2011 12:36 PM
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    AC - I wonder what your vendors would make of the BBC telling them something similar?

    Title: House sales have fallen so why are prices still high?

    • 25 July 2011 12:27 PM
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    I like Hometrack.

    I fill in the survey and I have won something - yay!

    On a more serious note, for my postcodes (Surrey) they have show successive months of (I love this term, are you ready?) negative growth!

    I LOVE that term.

    Problem I have is that every time I show them to a vendor to support my sensible pricing strategy, they immediately instruct another more positive estate agent.

    Vendors are mental.

    Oh well...


    • 25 July 2011 12:23 PM
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    I used to fill their reports in, now can't be bothered, never win anything - don't know anyone who has. And too long winded.

    • 25 July 2011 11:20 AM
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    I think we could do with out home track survey, its just a waste of time.

    Also I think Rightmove survey should be reformed to include all asking prices and not just new monthly ones. Also including the prices rises or falls of existing properties on their books. It would give a better representation on asking prices.

    • 25 July 2011 10:42 AM
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    I do enjoy your posts Mike.

    Yes, its mad is it not!

    • 25 July 2011 09:36 AM
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    Oh dear, prices 'tiptoed down'. They moved down oh so delicately - they really didn't want to - they didn't want to disturb anyone - so they 'tiptoed down' as gently as a ballerina on a tightrope made of cotton.

    Whereas when they go up - they 'surge' and they 'soar'. Free from the constraints of sanity and gravity - they leap upwards indebting generations in their wake. Happy days eh?

    • 25 July 2011 07:10 AM
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