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Housebuyer demand down for 12th month: RICS


Housebuyer demand fell for the twelfth consecutive month in March, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

The latest RICS’ member survey shows 17 per cent more surveyors saw a fall in interest in the month rather than a rise.

RICS says affordability is a big factor behind this, as is the lack of new homes on the market.

Sales also continued to fall in March, with 20 per cent more respondents reporting a fall rather than rise.

This trend has been unbroken since February 2017.

The trade association adds that “average stock levels on estate agents’ books remains near an all-time low”.

However, 17 per cent of surveyors said they expect sales to pick up over the next year at a national level.

RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn says: “The latest RICS results provide little encouragement that the drop in housing market activity is likely to be reversed any time soon,” he said.

“Apart from the implications this has for the market itself, it also has the potential to impact the wider economy, contributing to a softer trend in household spending.

“This could make Bank of England deliberations around a May hike in interest rates, which is pretty much odds-on at the moment, a little more finely balanced than would otherwise be the case.”



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