Stock shortages to hit conveyancers early 2022

Current record house prices will remain, driven by a lack of supply says that latest UK Residential Market Survey from RICS. 

For the 7th month in succession RICS reports a reduction in the number of properties coming to market, the knock-on effect of which will be a slow down in conveyancing in the first part of 2021.

There is also an impact on sales agreed. In October, respondents pointed to another dip in the volume of sales agreed over the month, (net balance -9%) with the main issue being a lack of stock for would-be buyers to choose from.

The latest survey also took the opportunity to poll respondents on the current state of energy efficiency in housing.

The survey indicated that the reality is for many home movers, energy efficient homes is simply not top of the priority list.

Around one-third of surveyors see an uptick in demand for energy efficient homes but three quarters report they are not yet seeing an impact o the price of the property if it is more energy efficient.

Whilst 62% of respondents anticipate demand for energy efficient properties improving over the coming three years, the current barrier for many to improve enhance their property’s energy efficiency is cost (85%).

The extra questions added to the October survey were devised to gauge consumers’ willingness to reduce their home’s carbon emissions and it’s impact on the market.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS Chief Economist, commented:

“Although the mood music around interest rates does appear to be shifting, for now the stronger influence on the housing market is the ongoing imbalance between demand and supply. The inventory on agents’ books appears to have slipped back towards historic lows and this seems to be underpinning both the current price trend and expectations for the next year.”

Meanwhile although there is likely to some drop in activity in the immediate aftermath of the expiry of the stamp duty break, most activity indicators currently remain solid. Indeed, the main challenge for buyers looking forward may once again be a lack of choice of property on the market.”

“As long as there is a lack of choice for would-be buyers, it is clear that buyers ambition to be more climate friendly will have to move down their list of priorities. The data from today’s report suggests that additional government funding and investment alongside new financial solutions appealing to homeowners, landlords and investors could pave the way for decarbonising UK homes.”

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