Monthly UK Housing Market Report
SALES TO FIRST TIME BUYERS AT HIGHEST LEVEL ON RECORD
- A third of sales in October were made to first time buyers (FTBs)
- Supply of available housing increased to the highest level since March this year
- Demand for housing also rose in October
Sales to FTBs and sales agreed
- In October, a third (32 per cent) of total sales made were to FTBs – a nine per cent rise from September and the highest number since records began 16 years ago in 2000. The last time the number of sales to FTBs was at a similar level was in October last year, when 31 per cent of sales were made to the group. [See figure 1]
- The number of sales agreed stayed the same in October, at an average of nine per branch.
Figure 1: Number of sales made to FTBs
Supply of properties
- The number of properties available on average per branch in October was 43. This is an increase of 7.5 per cent from September and the highest number recorded since March this year.
Demand for properties
- In October, the average number of house hunters increased by a third (32 per cent) from 333 to 440 registered per member branch. This is the highest level recorded since February this year, when there were 463 prospective buyers on estate agents’ books.
Mark Hayward, Managing Director, National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) comments on the findings: “This month’s report paints a positive picture for the UK housing market. Our findings over the last few months indicated mild uncertainty immediately following Brexit – and last month we even saw sales to FTBs fall. After shrugging off the uncertainty, we have seen an increase in supply and a rise in the number of sales to FTBs this month – proof the market is beginning to bounce back.
“Clearly what we need now though is a clear plan as to how the Government is going to tackle the chronic shortage of homes that we are facing. During the Autumn Statement, the Chancellor announced a boost to house-building which is a start but sadly nowhere near enough. We have high hopes for the Housing White Paper as this will set the housing strategy and intent for this Government going forward.”