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Housing Market Shows Tentative Activity

Activity levels are improving and downward pressures are easing, according to the latest Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Housing Market Survey.

Surveyors reported a second successive rise in new buyer registrations and the first rise in completed sales for four months, and the balance of newly agreed sales has also increased, says the report.

But RICS also warns that the improvements are fragile and the trend will need to continue for some months before the property market can be described as anything other than depressed. The survey suggests that the reduction in interest rates will only have a small impact on affordability of property, indicating that the latest rise in buyer interest may do little to reverse the trend.

Also it found the balance of surveyors reporting price rises was the highest it has been for five months which is a positive indicator that the market is gaining momentum, particularly considering the time of year.

Therefore, the Institute says optimism remains high, and with mortgage approvals on the increase and demand for top end properties still surpassing supply, it is unlikely that the market will drop dramatically.