Housing Report, July 2018


Key Findings

  • The supply of properties available to buy increased in July, while demand fell
  • First-time buyers (FTBs) took advantage of this, as the number of sales made to the group rose to an eight-month high
  • The number of sales agreed per branch decreased
  • A fifth of properties sold at the original asking price in July

Supply of properties

  • In July, the number of properties available per estate agent branch increased for the third month in a row, rising from an average of 33 per branch in April, to 37 in May, 39 in June and 41 last month.
  • Year-on-year this is a 17 per cent increase, as agents had just 35 properties available to market in July 2017.

Demand for housing

  • Overall, the number of house hunters registered at estate agents fell for the second month running with 303 registered per branch in July – the lowest recorded since December 2017 when agents had 268 on their books.
  • This is typical of July, as house hunters put their plans on hold while summer holiday season takes priority. For the last three years, demand has dipped in July compared to June.

Sales to first time buyers

  • FTBs took advantage of these market conditions, and almost a third (30 per cent) of all sales were made to the group in July.
  • This is an increase of one percentage point from June and seven from July 2017 when just 23 per cent of sales were made to the group.

Mark Hayward

Mark Hayward

Chief Executive

“What we saw in July was typical of the summer. House hunters put their plans on hold as the holiday season takes priority, and demand dips as a result. We don’t usually see FTBs taking advantage of this environment and pushing to agree sales while sellers are on the back-foot. In September, buyers typically storm the market in a bid to complete sales in time for Christmas, so FTBs should make the most of the slower market while they can.”