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Job market pessimism dents housing optimism

Over half of people now believe that it is a good time to buy property, but uncertainty surrounding their personal circumstances is denting their confidence, shows the Building Societies Associations Property Tracker survey.

The survey found that 54% of people believe that to some extent now is a good time to buy property in the UK.

This proportion has grown consistently since June last year when just 27% believed it was a good time to buy property, and is a further improvement on the 46% who thought so in the last Property Tracker in December.

The biggest barriers to home purchase remained the same as in December – lack of job security, access to a large enough mortgage and raising a deposit.

The survey has also shown that people expect prices to fall by a further 6% 3 over the next year, but just under a third viewed falling prices as a barrier to buying at the moment.

Paul Broadhead, head of mortgage policy at the BSA, says:”The survey shows increasing levels of interest in buying a property. With the Nationwide Building Society showing that property prices fell by more than 17% over the last year, coupled with lower interest rates, people are recognising that there are bargains to be found and they are increasingly interested in buying.

“However, it is also clear from the survey that it is the declining economic situation and perceived problems securing a mortgage that are viewed as preventing this desire to buy from being realised.

“Until economic confidence improves it is hard to see the feel good factor returning to the housing market.”

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