Economy

United Kingdom housing market subdued in July as sales and enquiries falter

United Kingdom housing market subdued in July as sales and enquiries falter”

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said its monthly house price balance dropped to +1 in July from +7 in June, its lowest since March 2013 and below all forecasts in a Reuters poll of economists.

Backed by the Ulster Bank, the latest Residential Market Survey contradicts the claim from the Ulster University's latest Quarterly House Price Index on Wednesday that there had been a 1.1% fall in values.

This latest reading was the weakest since March 2013 - however, different regions across the United Kingdom are experiencing different trends.

Nationwide, RICS said its price gauge fell its lowest level in more than four years, despite increases in Northern Ireland, the West Midlands and the southwest.

But prices are falling in London and the South East, the latter of which recorded its weakest reading since 2011.

The most expensive homes are particularly likely to have see cuts in the asking price before being sold.

The Rics survey also investigated the extent of properties having their prices slashed or selling for under the asking price. Homes for sale for more than £2m have had their prices slashed by an average of 10pc, while those in the middle of the market, valued between £200,000 and £500,000, have been reduced in price by just 3pc.

The survey indicated that house prices continued to rise and enquiries from potential buyers were up last month but that expectations for prices and sales in the three months ahead have moderated.

That figure was 57% for homes listed between £500,000 and £1m, while 37% of surveyors said homes listed at less than £500,000 had been sold below their original asking price. "Lack of new builds in the wake of the financial crisis is a more fundamental factor weighing on the market".



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