This year, many interested parties will be watching the situation carefully.
These will include struggling home owners trying to sell and a government whose survival could depend on the feel-good factor, which is often based on how individuals feel about the housing market.
So what hopes are there for a recovery in 2009? On the positive side houses are cheaper than they have been for several years, mortgages are cheaper – perhaps more so than they have ever been – and consumers can borrow at an astonishing 2.3% if they have big enough deposits.
So it’s not surprising to see that mortgage approvals were up by 4% in January compared with the December figure. But despite all the government has done, the financial markets remain frozen.
There is still a lack of confidence among banks which is resulting in a lack of funds.
Those hoping to feel some economic warmth this spring will need to see significant increases in lending and LTVs if their dreams are to become reality.