Lacklustre house sales reported in March

House sales in the UK remained flat this March, and predictions for house sale growth over the coming year have been reduced in eight out of the 12 UK counties surveyed, according to new research.

According to a report from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) UK house sales remained unchanged in March, and the number of properties that each estate agent has to sell has fallen to 43 on average, the lowest number of unsold properties for sale per agent since RICS’ records began in 1994.

In addition, approximately 13% of surveyors reported a drop in new property transactions.

However, the RICS said that prices are accelerating in some parts of the UK, due to a shortage of housing.

Inquiries continue to grow in areas like Northern Ireland, the South-west and London (where a moderate rise in inquiries was reported), therefore offsetting the decline elsewhere.

The majority of RICS members surveyed expect UK house prices to rise over the next year, albeit by a smaller margin than was forecast in February.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, said:

“The latest results for the RICS survey show little change in the underlying picture surrounding both sales and markets.” 

HM Land Registry recently reported that average UK house prices rose by 5.8% year-on-year in February and by 0.6% month-on-month, falling below the average annual house price growth of 7.3% seen in 2016.

In February, the average UK home cost £217,502.


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