The latest report from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors has found more confidence in the property market in May than there has been since 2007. RICS found market activity picking up, albeit from historic lows. New buyer enquiries have now increased for seven months in a row and the rebound in these enquiries is now feeding through into increased transactions, surveyors have found.

New instructions to sell have been falling for two years straight and now stand at historic lows, the report also points out, a state of affairs likely made worse by the changes to rules in Home Information Packs. This means the number of properties on people’s books continues to decline.

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Ian Perry, a spokesman for RICS, said: ‘On the face of it, the housing market does appear to be close to bottoming out with activity picking up in a material way and prices at last stabilising.

‘However, with the economic backdrop still quite uncertain, unemployment is set to continue increasing sharply and finance for first-time buyers is still in short supply, there are a number of significant obstacles for the market to overcome over the coming months.

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