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haart predicts renewed confidence for 2005

haart is predicting that house prices will continue to stabilise during 2005 with steady growth in the second half of the year.

the largest independent estate agent in the UK and Europe,

Russell Jervis, managing director of the independent estate agent, says: “2004 has been a game of two-halves for the housing market.

“Prices rose steadily during the spring until June when they began to cool off.

“From July onwards interest rate rises took their toll on the market as we saw applicant levels fall across our network and an increasing amount of sellers having to reduce their asking prices to achieve a sale.

“Price rises at the start of the year hit first-time buyers hardest with levels falling from 35% of the market at the start of the year to 15% by December.

“This has all meant that for the first time in many years, house prices will have started and finished the year at almost the same level.

“For 2005 we’re expecting to see a similar story – but in reverse.

“For the first six months house prices will continue to level-off and this process of stabilisation should create renewed confidence meaning that all those people who have been waiting to see what happens to prices will steadily come back to the market.

“The effect of five interest rates hit the market hard in 2004 but confidence in the market should not be affected by rises in 2005 as I believe rates have already reached their peak for this cycle at 4.75%.

“Property remains a solid investment and renting continues to be more expensive than borrowing. Our forecast for 2005 is that house prices will rise by 3-5%.”


Charcol comments on contradicting house price predictions

Charcol has reacted to Nationwide’s and Halifax’s contrasting house price predictions.Nationwide says house prices to increase by 2% in 2005, while Halifax says house prices are to fall by 2% in 2005.Charcol predicts that house prices will increase by 4% in 2005.Ray Boulger, senior technical manager of Charcol, says: “It is interesting to note that […]

Female advisers are much in demand

Female Independent, a mortgage advisory service set up by women for women, has received a huge amount of interest and is helping to plug a gap in the industry, say Carol Begbie and Susan Young

HBOS predicts 2% fall in house prices in 2005

HBOS is predicting a fall in house prices of 2% in 2005.This slight fall follows nine years of rising house prices when the average home has increased in value by almost 100,000, a 160% increase. Beyond 2005, it expects the market to record modest price increases and affordability to improve, especially for first-time buyers, who […]

Merrill says household borrowing will remain buoyant

Merrill Lynch, Mortgages PLCs new parent, says household sector borrowing in the UK is not about to collapse.A Merrill Lynch research report published this morning says: “In the UK the question is whether household sector borrowing is about to collapse or moderate towards a steady growth rate. Our view remains that household sector borrowing will […]

Simon Fletcher

Auto-enrolment: pay attention or pay the price

By Simon Fletcher

As a chief executive officer of a business in the financial services sector, I have been dealing with the introduction of auto-enrolment for our clients for some time, but I can also speak from an employer’s point of view, having to go through the process ourselves.


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