By John Greenwood, CEO at Creechurch Capital
The run-up to Christmas brings an optimistic view on house prices in the north of England and Ireland, according to the latest study from The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).
Although there has a been a slowdown in buyer activity throughout the rest of the UK, Scotland and Northern Ireland have a positive view on the housing market, with house prices having a net balances of 36% and 37% respectively.
The figures show that whilst the amount of stock coming onto the market remains virtually unchanged since October, the demand in the private rented sector continues to grow strongly.
Over the past quarter, tenant demand has increased across East Anglia, the north of England and Scotland. The latest figures show that rent expectations remain generally firm and it seems that a positive future is ahead as respondents’ predict an increase of around 2.5% over the next 12 months across the whole of the country.
However, the RICS study has shown that as new buyer demand slips for the fourth consecutive month, falling prices have affected regions across the capital, as 62% more surveyors reported a fall in new buyer demand in London.
The decline in buyer activity is being accredited to the changing criteria of mortgage lending making it harder for people to finance their homes, as well as an increase in awareness of the approaching general election. Although the study predicts that even with the dip in buyer demand, it’s not likely to result in a decline in house prices.