RICS Survey Confirms Housing Market Short Term Bounce

Figures by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has added further confirmation that the housing market is enjoying a short-term bounce, even before the stamp duty announcement by chancellor Rishi Sunak on Wednesday.

In a market snapshot published by RICS on Thursday, showed a net balance of 61% of its survey respondents seeing a rise in new buyer enquiries over the past 4 weeks. There was also an increase in the number of new properties being listed for sale with a net balance of 42% of respondents seeing an increase rather than a decrease.

In a note of positivity, 43% of respondents saw an increase in completed transaction over the last 4 weeks, meaning the number of newly agreed sales moved into the positive territory for the first time since February, despite the number of properties on sale still being at an all time low. Branches were averaging 39 properties on their books and respondents have reported that there has been a decline in house prices for the third successive report.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist explained:

“Key activity indicators in the RICS survey suggest that the market is enjoying a short term bounce following ending of the lockdown, with sharp spikes in the metrics tracking both buyer enquiries and new instructions.

“However, there are worrying signs that this rebound may quickly run out of steam against the backdrop of a tightening in lending criteria by mortgage providers, and the uncertain macro environment particularly with regard to the employment picture. Respondents to the survey highlight both of these issues in explaining the broadly flat picture regarding sales expectation beyond the immediate uplift.

“Meanwhile, the issues around the sales market appear to be shifting sentiment in the lettings market with, somewhat ominously given the prevailing economic climate, rent expectations beginning to edge upwards once again.”

 

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