The housing market ended 2016 on a positive note, according to
the latest report from the National Association of Estate Agents
The organisation reports that in December the prospective number
of buyers registered with the average agency branch was 386, up 12%
on November's figure.
It also represents the highest level of demand for December
since 2003 when the average branch had 451 buyers registered.
Sales to first-time buyers also increased last month to 32% of
all transactions, up from 29% in November.
The December figure was the highest since December 2001 and a
huge improvement on the 7% recorded in December 2005.
Last month the average agency branch had 41 properties on its
books, according to the NAEA's survey of its members. This marks a
slight improvement from November when the average supply level was
39 properties per office.
Despite the positive supply and demand figures, the number of
sales agreed dropped from eight per branch in November to six per
branch in December.
“In November we saw a seasonal slowdown; typically it’s uncommon
for people to buy and move close to Christmas. Yet, our December
findings have completely bucked this seasonal trend,” says Mark
Hayward, NAEA managing director.
“Despite an encouraging December, there remains a clear shortage
He says the NAEA awaits the government’s delayed housing White
Paper to see how it intends to tackle
the supply/demand imbalance.