Home-sellers returning to housing market



Sellers are Returning to Housing Market

Sellers are Returning to Housing Market

According to data released by National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA), the number of homeowners putting their properties on the block in February has jumped by 25% over the same period last year.

NAEA report shows the supply of properties per estate agent has gone up to 70 in February from 69, recorded in January 2011 and 56, recorded over the same period last year.

Average sales per agent has also gone up to eight in February from six, recorded a month ago while people searching for homes have also gone up with 268 registering with each agent compared to 252 in the previous month.

The NAEA report however, cautions that the positive numbers fail to reflect wide regional variations across the country.

The share of sales to first-time buyers went up marginally to 25% in February from 24% recorded in January.

The growth in property supply is a healthy sign and indicates that owners are becoming realistic about prices, said NAEA president Michael Jones.

Talking about the disparity among regions, he said: “The picture is still very variable across the UK with agents reporting much higher growth in enquiries and stock availability in some regions than others”.

The effect of public sector spending cut is yet to set in, he said adding: “Undoubtedly, broader economic constraints on spending continue to impact on consumer confidence, especially at a first-time buyer level, and the effect of the public sector cuts has yet to be fully felt”.

The talk of a looming interest rate hike by the central bank has also dampened the spirits of buyers, said Mr. Jones.

“With limited mortgage availability and the concern about a likely rise in interest rates still putting off many of the people who otherwise would be looking to buy, it is important that the government does everything it can to encourage growth at this crucial stage of the recovery process”, he urged.

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