According to the National Association of Estate Agents, the number of sales made to first time buyers has mounted for the second month running making its highest level in six years.
Averagely in October, out of nine sales made per estate agent branch in total a third were to first time buyers. In November, this group accounted for 29% of all sales.
NAEA managing director, Mark Hayward says “It’s really promising that, for the second month running, the number of sales being made to FTBs has risen. Competitive mortgage products and the increasing pressure of an interest rate rise could be encouraging first steppers to take the plunge, as well as the dwindling supply of rental housing stock – putting pressure on renters to buy”.
The supply of available housing did increase in October, just before it slows at Christmas.
The number of properties available to buy per branch increased by 16% in September compared to October. Whereas, demand for property slightly decreased from an average of 342 house-hunters per branch in September, to around 336 in October.
Hayward continues “Those selling their homes are keen to push through sales before Christmas, hence the uplift in properties entering the market. But with the average sale taking between nine and 12 weeks, its unlikely transactions will be pushed through before Christmas now. Buyers are holding off until January to kick off the New Year with a house-hunt”.
The association’s view is clear that the only long-term solution to the existing housing shortage is to build more homes.