London and South East slowing housing market

Housing market sees 'sustained deterioration' in activity as price growth stalls

But the balance of United Kingdom surveyors reporting price rises in July was down from 7% in June, partly owing to more surveyors in the South East reporting house price falls than the number reporting increases. At the same time, house prices in the South East fell further, recording the weakest level of growth for this region since 2011.

Brian Murphy, head of lending at the Mortgage Advice Bureau, said: "It would appear that, much like the current British summer, as far as surveyors are concerned the temperature of the United Kingdom housing market is variable across different parts of the country, with some areas, such as the west midlands and south-west, seeing house prices continue to increase at significant levels, yet others, such as London and the south-east, seeing prices cool".

Finally, for homes marketed at less than £0.5m, the largest share of respondents (49%) said that sales and asking prices were at the same level, although a still substantial 37% stated that sales prices were under.

Of those surveyed 68 per cent reported that homes marketed at more than £1m are seeing the greatest deviation from listed prices, and were being sold for less than their original asking price.

The surveryors blamed political uncertainty and the aftermath of tax changes for the lull in London's housing market.

"There has been a recent series of tax changes but this is only part of the story". And there are some very real consequences for the economy from all of this including the impact on the ability of people to be mobile when looking for work.

"When the housing market corrected in 2008, falling property values caused a balance sheet crisis for homeowners, worsening the shock to demand and deepening the recession".

"There is no real indication that the housing market will become materially more affordable anytime soon", RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said.

The average home is down £2,924 on the £222,190 peak on the Halifax index at the end of December a year ago.

British house prices rose at their slowest rate in over four years last month, while the number of sales slowed due to a limited supply of property and continued political uncertainty, a property industry body said yesterday. "Hence the need for the government to press ahead with the Build to Rent initiative as well as continuing to focus on other tenures alongside home ownership to try address this critical issue", said Rubinsohn.

"The bridging sector in particular has been flourishing in recent months, as those looking to capitalise on quick sales can do so with the flexibility and speed that this unique type of financing offers, and we expect this trend to continue".

Richard Sexton, director at e.surv, said that buyers and sellers are clearly adopting a "cautious approach" at the moment. 'We have seen increases in mortgage approvals year on year, driven by remortgage activity, particularly in the North, ' he explained.

More expensive property was struggling to sell for close to its asking price.

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