Home sales increase dramatically First-time buyers have continued to buoy the UK property market, creating a shift in sales patterns, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) latest Residential Market Survey, published this month. Whilst there were low numbers of new properties on the market in the previous months, August saw 26% more surveyors reporting an increase in new instructions, against a figure of 16% in the previous month. Encouragingly this increase was seen across the UK, implying that many more potential vendors are entering the market. Although historically driven by the London and South East regions, August also saw the increase in supply in other areas such as the South West and the North East rise dramatically. Given this increase in supply, Rics did note, however, that it was still not keeping up with the latent demand, as their findings reported that a net balance of 66% more surveyors saw an increase in potential new buyers enquiries. As a result of this imbalance in the supply and demand dynamic, asking prices were seen to increase and 40% more surveyors reported price rises rather than price falls. This is the highest positive response since 2006. Their forward looking assessment was for prices to continue to rise unabated, with 45% more surveyors believing the next three months will see continuing price escalation. Peter Bolton King, the Global Residential Director of Rics said of these results: “It’s not surprising that more and more people are looking to sell their homes. The buyers are out there and prices are on the up so if you are looking to move it’s a good time to do so. What we don’t wish to see, however, is prices rise to such an extent that they become unaffordable. For the market to work properly, it’s vital that property is both accessible and affordable, and we’ll be monitoring the situation very carefully as the housing sector continues to recover.”  Download full report here

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