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House sales soar as prices slip lower

House sales soar as prices slip lower

Category: Economy

Updated: 27/06/2011
First Published: 27/06/2011

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

The housing market sprung back into life in June after sellers dropped their prices slightly to clinch a deal.

The latest data from Hometrack revealed a 10.6% surge in the number of house sales compared with May, thanks to lower prices and greater realism from sellers over the price they are likely to achieve.

Average prices fell by 0.1% over the month, with estate agents also keen to make sure deals are sealed in order to boost their revenues.

The latest slide in prices means average property values have slipped back by 1% over the first half of the year.

However, the volume of sales has increased in that time as more potential buyers have returned to the market and sellers have tempered their price expectations.

Prices are on average 3.9% lower than at the same time last year.

"The first six months of 2011 have seen the housing market holding up better than many had expected," said Richard Donnell, director of research at Hometrack.

"Low transaction volumes, low mortgage rates and forbearance by lenders limiting the number of forced sales have all played their part.

"While average prices have slipped back by 1%, sales volumes have increased off the back of higher demand and greater realism over achievable prices on behalf of sellers."

With the number of homes being put up for sale continuing to outstrip the number of new buyers registering with estate agents, it is predicted prices are more likely to fall further over the coming months than rise.

On average sellers are achieving 92.8% of the price they originally asked for.

The average time that it is taking for a property to sell is 9.7 weeks.

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