The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has published its latest UK Residential Market Survey, which found that momentum continued to slow in the UK housing market in March as buyer demand fell for the twelfth consecutive month.
Looking more closely at the position in Scotland, the survey reveals that a lack of supply continues to push up prices in the Scottish housing market and slow down demand.
Demand was flat in Scotland along with agreed sales in March 2018, both of which were partly due to the lack of supply in the Scottish residential market. The number of new properties coming on to the market has been falling for a year, with 10% more respondents observing new sales instructions falling (rather than rising) in March.
This lack of supply is a key factor affecting affordability, says RICS, with respondents noting that the continued shortage of stock is driving up prices. In March, 30% more respondents noted an increase (rather than decrease) in prices at the headline level. Prices are anticipated to continue to rise over the near term too, with a net balance of +30% contributors, expecting growth over the next three months.
On a more positive note, survey respondents expressed optimism over sales expectations, with nearly a third (30%) anticipating sales to grow over the next three months in Scotland. The picture for sales over the year ahead in Scotland is also optimistic, with a net balance of +52% of contributors anticipating an increase in sales over the next twelve months.
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