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House market rebound runs out of steam

House market rebound runs out of steam

Category: Mortgages

Updated: 08/05/2012
First Published: 08/05/2012

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 It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.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 rebound in the housing market appears to have run out of steam, as the effects of the stamp duty holiday come to an end.

There had been some optimism about the housing market with figures showing an upturn in buyer numbers and interest.

But the boost received from temporary factors such as the end of the stamp duty holiday on properties worth between £125,000 and £250,000 and the unusually mild weather in March have dissipated, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Newly agreed sales weakened with the net balance turning negative once again (from +10 to -6).

This fall in the sales net balance could reflect the payback from sales brought forward by purchasers looking to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday before its expiry.

In addition, figures showed that house prices are falling across the UK , apart from in London.

"With the recent surge in activity brought on by March's stamp duty holiday coming to an end, it is unsurprising to see that prices across much of the country are continuing to fall," said Peter Bolton King, housing spokesperson for RICS.

"Renewed concerns over the economy and talk of a double dip recession dominating the headlines in recent weeks may well have served to undermine consumer confidence.

"What's more, the continuing lack of affordable mortgage finance is still hindering many first time buyers who cannot afford to get a foot on the property ladder."

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