Housing Report, April 2019

NUMBER OF PROPERTY TRANSACTIONS INCREASES DESPITE FALL IN SUPPLY AND DEMAND

Key Findings

  • The number of sales agreed per branch increased to the highest level seen since October
  • Demand for housing and supply of properties fell
  • Sales to first-time buyers (FTBs) increased

Sales agreed

  • The number of sales agreed per member branch increased for the first time this year, rising from an average of seven per branch in March, to eight in April
  • This is the highest level seen since October 2018, when the same number of sales were recorded per branch
  • Year-on-year, the number of property transactions remains the same.

Supply of available properties

  • The number of properties available per member branch fell in April, from 37 in March, to 35
  • Year-on-year housing supply has increased, with only 33 properties available to buy in April 2018.

Sales agreed

Figure 1: Supply of available properties per branch

Demand for housing

  • After a rise in demand in March, the number of house hunters registered per estate agent branch fell by 10 per cent in April, from 296 to 265
  • Year-on-year, demand was at the lowest level recorded for the month of April since 2008 when 237 house hunters were registered on average per branch. Housing demand also fell by a fifth (21 per cent) from April 2018 when there were 337 prospective buyers per branch.

Sales to FTBs

  • The number of sales made to FTBs in April increased marginally, rising from 26 per cent in March, to 27 per cent
  • Year-on-year, this is an increase of three percentage points from 24 per cent.

Mark Hayward

Mark Hayward

Chief Executive

“Despite a fall in housing supply and demand, it’s encouraging to see an increase, for the first time this year, in the number of sales going through. This means that even though buyers and sellers remain uncertain given the current climate, many are continuing to move forward with their transactions and sales are still happening at the rate we would expect to see at this time of year. More than four in five properties are selling for less than the original asking price, so there’s an opportunity for house buyers and sellers to negotiate an offer to get a sale moving.”