Sales volumes plummet 52%
Sales volumes slumped 52% to an average of 31,091 per month between December and March.
The Land Registry’s House Price Index for May shows that the volume of properties priced between £250,001 and £300,000 suffered the greatest decline across the country last month, with sales down 60% to 1,527. The volume of properties priced between £50,001 and £100,000 experienced the smallest decline, with volumes down 20% to 6,293.
In terms of prices, the average national house price declined 0.2% on a monthly basis and 15.9% on the year to £152,497.
Prices declined the furthest in the North East, down 4.3% on a monthly basis and 17.2% on the year to £105,567. Conversely, prices increased in Wales, the East, the North West, the West Midlands and the South East by 1.2%, 1.1%, 1.0%, 1.0% and 0.5% respectively.
Merthyr Tydfil experienced the smallest annual price movement of 3.6% but the greatest monthly decline of -6%. Luton experienced the highest annual decline of 21.8%.
Simon Rubinsohn, chief economist for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, says: "More evidence that the housing market is stabilising is visible in the latest figures from the Land Registry. Completed transactions have settled down at just over 30,000 per month, roughly a quarter of the long run average.
"If more timely buyer enquiries and mortgage approvals data is anything to go by, the actual level of completed sales is likely to climb towards 40,000 over the coming months. Even this improvement, however, continues to demonstrate the adverse impact of the lack of mortgage finance on activity."
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