By +Eric Jafari
When the government revealed the UK economy
contracted during the final quarter of 2012, there was a
fear that the impact would be far reaching, especially in the
property market. However, the Royal Institute of Chartered
Surveyors (RICS) believes the worst is in fact over for the sector.
In their latest housing market survey they revealed that the number
of housing transactions increased once again in January.
Some 15 per cent more chartered surveyors noted rising sales
last month - the fourth rise in as many months. Prices also
remained broadly stable during the first month of the year.
Although four per cent more respondents noted a price fall in
January, property values have remained consistent with December
2012. Prices remained in positive territory in London and the South
East, while Wales also enjoyed price increases for the first time
since the first part of 2010. Taken together, RICS claims figures
indicate that things are looking up for the property market.
Peter Bolton King, RICS global residential director, stated:
"Price falls across the UK have gradually stemmed in recent months
and it is interesting to see that the amount of completed
transactions are on the rise, as confidence returns to the
marketplace. While it is still very early days to talk about a
comprehensive market recovery, activity levels are still
encouraging and there is some optimism out there that things could
continue to improve."
Nonetheless, the RICS acknowledges that the market still faces
considerable barriers, with demand from prospective buyers dipping
in the New Year and a net balance of nine per cent of surveyors
suggesting that new buyer enquiries fell during January. This is a
symptom of high house prices in key locations and "lofty deposits"
demanded by lenders keeping first-time buyers off the property
ladder. Consequently, there is very little movement in the lower
end of the market. January also witnessed a slight fall in the
number of homes coming on to the market, but the RICS believes this
may in part be the result of the bad weather experienced across the
13 February 2013
UK House Prices,First Time Buyers,RICS,Peter Bolton King,UK Property Market