Property News

HMRC Reveal House Sales Drop

Em Morley - February 24, 2015

Property sales in the UK dropped in January, falling by 6% compared to last year, however, estate agents’ opinions on the significance of the matter differ.

January saw a total of 97,320 transactions, revealed the latest figures from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).1

HMRC Reveal House Sales Drop

HMRC Reveal House Sales Drop

 

This is the lowest amount since October 2013, and the fourth consecutive monthly decrease in sales.

Experts are predicting property price increases of 4% in 2015.1

Estate agent views

In 2014, house sales were at their highest level since the start of the financial crisis, with 1.2m properties being sold.1

Despite this, sales have started to decline in recent months.

Peter Rollings, from Marsh and Parsons estate agents described buyer demand as “still rosy”, and expects activity to pick up again.

He says: “January has seen a boost in agreed sales, which has firmly set the ball rolling for 2015, and this will only gather faster momentum during the spring, typically one of the most popular times to move house, when these completions come to fruition.”1

Nevertheless, estate agent Jeremy Leaf believes that stricter mortgage rules and doubt caused by the upcoming general election would halt activity.

Leaf explains: “The slowdown has come with a thud. At the beginning of the year, we were seeing movement, but over the last few weeks there has been a change in the mood.”1

The outlook depends on local housing markets around the UK; however, recent figures reveal that prices are increasing to some extent in every county and region of the UK.

Annual house price inflation was at 10.2% in England, 4% in Wales, 5.5% in Scotland, and 4.9% in Northern Ireland in 2014.1

To look specifically at house prices across the country, use the BBC’s property price calculator.

1 http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/business-31605848