Housing market sees ‘flurry of activity’ as home buyers and sellers return

Posted on Wednesday, June 5, 2024

There was a notable increase in prospective purchasers, sales instructions and agreed deals in in April as the housing market saw a “flurry of activity”, according to Propertymark.

The trade body’s Housing Insight report for April revealed the average number of new prospective buyers registering per estate agency branch reached 88 in April, up from 76 a month earlier.

Meanwhile, there was only a marginal drop in the average number of viewings per property, which fell from around three-and-a-half per property to three.

New housing supply in April rose, as measured by new sales instructions, which averaged around 12 homes being put up for sale per estate agency brand. This was up from the previous month’s average of 10; good news for estate agents, which saw the number of properties for sale on their books increase.

Market appraisals, which also indicate future housing supply, increased from 22 in March to 26 in April.

There was an average of nine agreed sales per branch in April, which was up from the previous month’s average of seven sales.

Nathan Emerson, CEO of Propertymark, said: “The residential sales sector has seen an early flurry of activity in April with prospective buyer registrations, new sales instructions, and the number of sales agreed all increasing. However, challenges remain. Although the gap between asking prices and market expectations continues to narrow, further realignment is required to keep the market moving. Furthermore, those seeking to move home before Christmas, need to be cognisant of elongated exchange times and act now.”

In the residential lettings sector, Propertymark members report an increase in the number of prospective tenant registrations. However, while stock levels have increased slightly, demand continues to outstrip supply, with around nine new applicants registered for each available property in April 2024.

Emerson continued: “Rents continue to fluctuate although there are signs that in some areas, rents have reached a ceiling in terms of affordability. More broadly, our members remain concerned that some landlords are choosing to exit the sector. The reasons for exit are multifaceted although ongoing legislative uncertainty is undoubtedly playing a role.

“We continue to work with policymakers across the UK to highlight the critical role the PRS plays in the wider housing system and to encourage policies that can stabilise the sector’s investment patterns.”

Via @PropertyIndustryEye