The housing market showed promising signs of recovery last month, the latest report from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) reveals including rising sales, more instructions and stabilising prices.
It says interest from buyers increased for the first time since the EU Referendum three years ago, which sent buyer confidence into freefall, and that the number of agents reporting an uptick in newly agreed sales entered ‘positive territory’.
The monthly RICs report also reveals that sellers are feeling more confident —its new instructions indicator turned positive for the first time in a year.
Also, the number of agents reporting local price falls dropped, posting the strongest housing market for over a year, although prices continue to fall in London and the South of England but rise elsewhere.
“The latest data provides further evidence of the sales market settling down,” says Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, pictured left.
“But I don’t get the impression from the insight provided by contributors that this is fuelling hope of a significantly more active market going forward.
RICS’ report on the lettings market is less rosy. It says the government’s assault on private landlords is having its desired effect; the supply of rental homes within the market dropped for the 20th month in a row.
Consequently, RICS predicts that in the coming months rents will rise faster than house prices.
“Build to Rent should in time help take up some of the slack in parts of the country but the RICS indicators capturing rent expectations suggests there is no expectation this will be the case anytime soon,” says Rubinsohn.
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