First time buyers are now driving the housing market according to the CML, Council of Mortgage Lenders, which they state is due to landlords withdrawing from the market.*
The property portal Right Move has also stated that asking prices hit a record high in April for those homes targeted at first-time buyers. Their latest house index showed that national listings hit a record high of £313,655, an increase of 2.2% on the same period last year and exceeding the previous all time high of £310,471 in June 2016. Their research revealed that the first-time buyer homes increased by 6.5% in the last 12 months to April 2017 at £194,881.
Miles Shipside, Rightmove director, stated: “High buyer demand in most parts of the country has helped to propel the price of newly marketed property to record highs.
“There are signs of a strong spring market with the number of sales agreed achieved at this time of year being the highest since 2007.
“It remains to be seen what effect the run-up to the snap election will have, though any slowdown in activity will be counterbalanced by the market’s current fast pace. Indeed, in locations where choice of suitable property is limited, hesitation could mean losing out to others who still decide to act.”
He predicted that stretched buyer affordability will continue to be a price moderator for sellers who are over-ambitious with their pricing, tempering the pace of price rises.
Shipside also added: “Strong buyer activity this month has led to 10% higher numbers of sales agreed than in the same period in 2016. This large year-on-year disparity should be viewed cautiously as the comparable timespan in 2016 saw a drop in buy-to-let activity with the additional second home stamp duty.
“However, they are also up by 3.8% when compared to 2015. With the growth in household numbers and new-build supply struggling to keep pace, demand is strong and has led to the highest sales agreed numbers at this time of year since the heady pre credit-crunch levels.”