Expectations, demand and sales expectations all down in latest market snapshot

Brexit uncertainty and a lack of affordability in some areas continue to stifle the UK housing market, leaving Britain’s estate agentswith their gloomiest view of property values in 10 years.

The latest monthly snapshot from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) shows a further weakening of the market, with demand, prices and sales expectations all down.

The industry survey came as the latest government figures showed annual house price growth across the UK had slowed to the lowest rate since July 2013, with average prices up 2.5% in the year to December, down from 2.7% in November. The Office for National Statistics figures also suggested the housing market slowdown could be spreading from London and the south-east to other regions.

There was an annual price decline of 1% in the north-east in December, compared with an increase of 1.7% in November, while London prices fell 0.6% over the year. The average UK house price was £231,000 in December, £6,000 higher than 12 months earlier.

The Rics house prices balance, which measures the difference between the number of estate agents and property surveyors anticipating increases and those expecting decreases, dropped to -22% in January, the lowest level since March 2009.

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