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Buyers and sellers waiting for clarity: Propertymark

Data from NAEA Propertymark shows that both supply and demand continued to fall in November while sales to first-time buyers were flat.

Regarding demand, the body’s latest housing report shows that the number of people looking for a house registered to each estate agent branch analysed fell from 294 in October to 282 this month, which is the lowest number recorded for a November since 2012 – which saw 263 registered.

Supply of available housing, meanwhile, fell from 40 per branch in October to 35 in November – a drop of 13 per cent – exactly the same rate as the fall from September to October. This is the lowest number since the 33 counted per branch in April.

Further data shows more rate repetition: last month’s report described 23 per cent of properties sold going to FTBs, and that was the case in November, too. However, measured yearly, the number of sales to FTBs dropped from 27 per cent.

More broadly, the number of total sales agreed per branch came to seven – down from eight in October and nine in September.

NAEA Propertymark chief executive Mark Hayward says: “Last month it was clear that uncertainty surrounding Brexit was having an impact on the sector, and this month is no different. We usually see a seasonal slow-down, but it’s unlikely that the time of year is the sole cause of today’s market conditions.

“As we near the end of the year, we’d usually expect potential buyers and sellers to put their plans on hold until early next year, but it’s likely that this year we’ll just see people holding off until there’s some clarity around what the Brexit deal might look like and what it will mean for the economy.”

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