RICS’ survey find pace of momentum in the sector “continues to ebb”

The UK housing market is in danger of stagnating, RICS’ latest residential survey has found, with fewer properties and new buyers coming to the market.

According to the institute’s April market survey, the pace of momentum in the sector “continues to ebb”, with sales declining slightly during the month and new buyer enquiries edging lower.

New instructions also weakened further, RICS said, with the calling of a snap general election adding to vendors’ concerns. While prices continued to rise moderately across most of the country – the exceptions being East Anglia and the North East – what RICS called an “acute shortage of stock” was underpinning increases where they occurred.

“The lack of choice for would-be buyers across the UK appears to be one influence dampening overall sales market activity,” RICS reported.

“New buyer enquiries were again broadly unchanged and have now failed to see any meaningful growth since November of last year. Alongside stagnant demand, the latest figures point to agreed sales starting to slip modestly following a number of months of static transactions,” it added.

RICS said respondents to its survey expected the situation to remain flat for the next three months, but that the 12 month outlook “appears somewhat brighter, with 31% more anticipating a pick-up in sales, rather than a decline, over the year ahead”.