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Lack of homes holds back property market

A shortage of homes coming onto the nation’s housing market is seriously hampering growth and pushing prices higher in many parts of the country, according to the RICS January Residential Market Survey.

During January, the number of houses coming up for sale across the UK hit its lowest point since July 2012, despite the amount of potential buyers continuing to surge ahead in most areas. However, despite vendor numbers not having seen any sustained increase for some months, some surveyors note that supply is expected to increase as we enter the traditional ‘spring bounce’.

However, last month, with the gap between listless supply and rising demand not seeing any considerable change, prices continued to grow in every part of the UK. During January, a net balance of 53% more respondents across the country reported growing prices (from +56% in December). The cost of a home in the UK has now been rising for just under a year.

Looking ahead, the more positive outlook continues with a net balance of 32% more chartered surveyors predicting transaction numbers to increase over the coming three months, while expectations for future prices are also strongly positive.

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