A slightly stronger end to the year for the UK housing market is being forecast, with transaction levels expected to pick up and price falls predicted to slow, according to the latest RICS UK housing market survey.
RICS (the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors), which claims to be world's leading professional body for qualifications and standards in land, property and construction, said that UK chartered surveyors’ expectations for future sales had reached their highest level since May 2010.
It said this was helped by the prospect of greater mortgage availability on the back of recent government initiatives.
During September, a net balance of 26% more respondents predicted transactions would grow during the final three months of the year.
This cautious optimism was also reflected in surveyors’ price predictions with 9% more respondents expecting prices to fall over the coming three months. While still in negative territory, this is the most positive reading since the time of the expiry of March’s stamp duty holiday, said RICS.
It said that last month, prices in the UK housing market had continued to fall, albeit at a slower pace than in previous months. A net balance of 15% more surveyors reported falls rather than rises, the best reading since the spring.
Peter Bolton King, RICS global residential director, said, “The housing market was relatively flat during September but surveyors are optimistic that the run in to Christmas could see an increase in activity in many areas of the country. Prices are still dipping but at a much lower rate than seen in previous months.
“Despite this, problems still exist and more needs to be done to get the market moving. Unrealistic expectations on the part of vendors seem to be stalling the transaction process,” he added.