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Hometrack: Housing demand remains weak

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by Kay Mitchell

According to housing intelligence group, Hometrack, house prices in England and Wales fell at their fastest annual pace since October 2009 last month.

According to Hometrack, house prices fell by 0.1% on the month and are 3.7% lower on the year.

House prices have now fallen for 10 consecutive months, according to the group.

Hometrack attributes the fall to weak demand for housing on the uncertainty regarding the economy and the Government’s spending cuts.

Furthermore, the ongoing mortgage rationing by lenders means first-time buyers, in particular, are struggling to get a foot on the property ladder.

Richard Donnell, director of research at Hometrack, comments: “The late Easter break and May bank holidays reduced the volume of traffic through agents’ offices.

“With concern over household finances and the wider economic outlook, demand for housing is likely to continue to post further modest declines over the summer,” he added.

In stark contrast, the Nationwide Building Society recently reported a 0.3% rise in house prices for the month of May compared with April.

In the meantime, Hometrack reported that the number of new buyers registering with estate agents during the month dropped by 0.5% – the first fall since January.

However, the number of agreed sales grew by 1.6% last month, albeit this was lower than April’s 8% rise.

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News posted: May 30, 2011

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