The property market has been softening across the UK as homes take longer to sell in particular higher up the property ladder, the Bank of England has reported.
Its latest quarterly assessment of the UK economy reveals fewer transactions and weaker house price inflation in many areas and a continuing shortage of stock.
But the bank says that the housing market remains strongest in the north and in particularly Scotland, and that in general sales of newbuild homes are stronger than resales, helped at the lower end of the market by Help to Buy.
The report also says that cheaper homes are selling best while more expensive properties are struggling, reflecting the impact of recent Stamp Duty changes on the housing market.
“Some house builders reported slightly weaker demand and the need for greater use of incentives, especially for higher-priced properties,” the report says.
The Bank of England also says the rate at which new homes are being built slowed in some regions, although the construction of homes for the student market remains strong.
It also says sales of new cars, white goods and homewares have weakened significantly, which the bank blames in part on reduced housing market activity.
“In general, I think the housing market is starting to plateau,” says Neil Knight, Business Development Director of Spicerhaart Part Exchange & Assisted Move (left).
“Last week, ONS figures revealed that house prices rose at their lowest annual rate in five years. And so far, we haven’t seen the usual autumn pick up in sales volumes, possibly because many potential buyers are put off making any big decisions about buying or selling due to the current political and economic uncertainties.”