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Buyer enthusiasm increases

Buyer enthusiasm increases

Category: Mortgages

Updated: 12/03/2009
First Published: 10/03/2009

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The Government has been told to help first time buyers secure mortgages in a bid to kick start the struggling property market.

The call has been made by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), whose survey has shown that buyer enthusiasm is actually at its highest level for some time.

Interest levels rose for the fourth month in a row in February, with 20 per cent more chartered surveyors reporting a rise rather than a fall in new buyer enquiries. London showed the greatest rise as interest reached levels not seen since October 2006.

Rising enthusiasm has not translated to house sales, however, as the number of transactions per agency fell to an average of 9.5 - the lowest figure since the survey started in 1978. Flats are proving especially difficult to sell as first time buyers are unable to step onto the first rung of the property ladder

Difficulty in obtaining mortgage finance, even for those with large deposits, has also been cited as a key factor for the worrying figures.

"The Government must provide guarantees for the new issuance of residential mortgage backed securities to help first time buyers in particular and give the market much needed impetus," said RICS spokesperson, Jeremy Leaf.

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