Property market failed to rally

THE East of England residential property market failed to rally in March, despite some parts of the country seeing an improvement due to the stamp duty holiday finally coming to an end, says the latest RICS UK Housing Market Survey (April 9, 2012).

New buyer enquires remained in negative territory in March, with seven percent more surveyors reporting decreases rather than increases in demand.

Alongside this, the flow of new properties coming onto the region’s market saw a boost with a net balance of 14 percent more respondents reporting rises in new instructions (from -8 percent more in February). Significantly, many surveyors across the UK report that those looking to sell their homes must be realistic in their price expectations if they are to be successful.

Meanwhile, prices continued to edge downward across the East of England as 20 percent more surveyors reported falls rather than rises in prices.

Predictions for future prices across the region fell away again as 13 percent more surveyors in the East of England expect prices to continue falling rather than rise over the next three months.

Looking ahead, although demand fell across the region, expectations for future transaction levels were slightly more upbeat with a net balance of 17 percent more surveyors expecting sales to increase over the coming three months.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS Chief Economist, said: “Many parts of the country saw demand increase in the run up to the stamp duty holiday ending but this wasn’t the case in the East of England. However, it remains to be seen whether the national improvements can continue, given the changes in the Budget and ongoing problems affecting the economy.”