Property Prices Trend Suggests Shift To Buyers Market

A recent survey conducted by property information company Hometrack has revealed a growing disparity in the supply and demand of residential property. Whilst housing supply increased over the quarter to September by 7.3%, new registrations of prospective purchasers actually fell 6.5%, further depressing house prices. The fall in new registrations is being attributed to an increased reluctance by consumers to take on additional debt given the uncertain economic outlook and looming public sector job cuts. The number of new registrants will also have been impacted by a tightening in lending criteria, with recent reports suggesting that first time buyers are now being required to provide a 24% deposit on average.

Richard Donnell, Hometracks Director of Research, envisages dramatic changes in the market, “The decline in demand has accelerated over the last three months compared to the previous quarter. Anecdotally, agents report that there are fewer purchasers and that those purchasers looking to buy are both cautious and choosy. The return to a buyer's market seems inevitable in the coming months, although the majority of vendors do not have to sell.”

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