HOUSE buyers continue to drag their feet amid Brexit uncertainty – but the market is expected to pick up again, experts have predicted.
The number of buyer enquiries fell for the eight month in a row to March, according to the Royal Institution of Charted Surveryors (Rics), which it blames on a “Brexit impasse”.
House prices are expected to rise again over the next 12 monthsGetty – Contributor
Demand also fell all over the UK as buyers waited for the outcome of negotiations to see if they could get a better deal.
But there’s reason for homeowners to be optimistic because out of the 300 chartered surveyors questioned in its monthly report, many reckoned that property prices will improve over the next 12 months.
Prices are expected to resume growth in areas all over the UK, with the biggest rises predicted for homes in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
London and South East England are the only areas where surveyors agree that the cost of property will continue to slip.
New buyer enquiries dropped in March ahead of BrexitRICS
Rics chief economist said that “Brexit remains a major drag on activity in the market” and that it “expect transactions to decline” over the next few months.
While it’s not what sellers want to hear, it puts first-time buyers in a strong position to haggle down costs.
The firm also blames the slow market on low housing stock as the number of homes up for sale came close to a record low, with just 42 properties per estate agent branch, up slightly on February.
The market is being held up by sellers struggling to shift property because they expect unrealistic prices, according to Rics.
North London estate agent Jeremy Leaf added that “sellers are still nervous” but promisingly believes that “pent-up demand will be released once the odds on a Brexit deal shorten”.
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EU leaders have agreed to extend Britain’s departure from the bloc until Halloween this year in fresh humiliation for Theresa May.
As the uncertainty continues, we spoke to industry insiders to find out what’s really going on with the housing market – and is it going to crash?
Mortgage rates are also likely to be affected by Brexit. Right now, they’re at an all time low but if the Bank of England hikes interest rates to help balance the economy, then your bills may rise.
Average house prices in the UK
HERE are average house prices across the UK's alongside the annual change to December 2018, according to Nationwide Building Society:
– Northern Ireland, £139,599, 5.8 per cent
– East Midlands, £184,283, 4 per cent
– Wales, £156,891, 4 per cent
– Yorkshire and Humberside, £157,436, 3.7 per cent
– West Midlands, £188,163, 2.9 per cent
– North West, £160,984, 2.2 per cent
– South West, £244,304, 2 per cent
– East Anglia, £228,014, 2 per cent
– North East, £125,813, 1 per cent
– Scotland, £147,856, 0.9 per cent
– Outer South East (includes Bedford, Brighton and Hove, Milton Keynes, Aylesbury, Portsmouth and Southampton), £277,117, 0 per cent
– London, £466,988, minus 0.8 per cent
– Outer Metropolitan (includes Reading, Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead and Wokingham), £356,531, minus 1.4 per cent
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