Signs of the market levelling up
Asking prices for properties new to the market have barely crept up in the last month, commented Andrew Oulsnam of leading Estate Agents Robert Oulsnam & Company
New instructions are up 10% on the previous month and 8% on a year ago and there are early signs of a “belated return to balance between supply and demand”.
It is likely that the Bank of England would be relieved at signs of the market cooling.
The Bank has been told by Chancellor George Osborne to step in if necessary to stop the market getting out of control, and been handed new powers to cap the size of mortgages in relation to earnings.
There is a “clumsy” implementation of the Mortgage Market Review, causing a drop in mortgage approvals and leading to “headache and heartache”.
It is taking longer and longer to get mortgages approved causing sales to drag on with the time from agreement to completion is often over 16 weeks.
A particular problem is if sales are delayed for other reasons and the mortgage offer goes out of date if it was approved before the new Market Review regulations then it won’t be re-approved.
While the increase in new listings is concentrated more in Birmingham than Worcestershire supply still looks very short across the whole area.
The London market tends to power the rest of the UK but there are early signs reported this is starting to run out of steam.
The market in London is completely out of kilter due to prices rising far above the equivalent increase in incomes.
This is not the case in the Midlands and the rest of the country where prices have risen on average about 6% across the board and most of the property over £400,000 are not above 2007 prices yet.
Quality buyers for the mid range and more expensive properties remain thin on the ground