Wednesday, February 22, 2012
More First Time Buyers (FTBs) came through estate agents' doors
than at any point in the previous eight months, according to the
National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA).
Figures from the (NAEA) January Market Report
show that 23 per cent of overall sales made last month were to
FTBs, compared with 21 per cent in December.
This represents the third consecutive monthly
increase in sales to FTBs. The number was last this high in May
2011 (24 per cent).
NAEA President Wendy Evans-Scott said: "First
Time Buyers seem to be making the most of the Stamp Duty Holiday
before it comes to an end in March. The NAEA and other property
specialists campaigned hard for the Government to introduce the tax
exemption to support First Time Buyers, and these latest figures
certainly suggest that stamp duty is a key factor for those on
tight budgets purchasing their first home.
"We are deeply disappointed that Ministers have axed this
support for a crucial part of the housing market which has
benefited so many house-hunters in getting onto the property
The NAEA's report also shows that the number of
house hunters registering at branches across the country decreased
slightly, with 260 per branch in January compared with 294 in
Overall sales increased slightly across the property market in
January, with an average of 6 per branch compared with 5 per branch
in December. In contrast, supply levels dipped to their lowest
level in 19 months with an average of just 60 properties available
Wendy added: "Earlier this month the Chancellor announced plans
to enable a new Bank of England committee to set loan-to-value
ratios on mortgages. Our latest figures show just how fragile the
housing market can be; therefore any efforts to prevent
unsustainable property bubbles and unwanted house price deflation
are to be welcomed.
"At the same time the Government also needs to take into
consideration that requiring aspiring buyers to have even larger
deposits than are currently demanded risks excluding even more
young people from the market."