Zoopla survey reveals homeowner confidence surge
A staggering 79% of homeowners expect property prices to rise in the next six months, according to Zoopla.co.uk’s latest quarterly sentiment survey.
They expect prices to increase 5.4% over the next six months. This compares to 11% of the 6,682 homeowners surveyed, who do not expect values to fall over the next six months.
Overall, homeowners believe that the clearest sign of a property market recovery is the increase in transaction volumes in their area from the recent lows.
On a regional basis, Scots are most optimistic about the market outlook, with 83% expecting the value of their home to rise over the next six months, compared to 79% in England and 78% in Wales. Homeowners in Northern Ireland are least confident, with almost a third (31%) predicting their home values will fall or remain flat in the same period.
Conversely, 42% of renters surveyed believe that house values in their area will either remain unchanged or decline in the next six months. Renters are also least hopeful about the availability of mortgage funding, with 76% claiming that it is as difficult to secure a mortgage now as it was three months ago. Nevertheless, 53% indicate an intent to try to buy in the next six months.
Alex Chesterman, chief executive officer of Zoopla.co.uk, parent company of Thinkproperty and Propertyfinder, says: “Confidence drives transaction volumes, which in turn drives house prices. But with lending remaining constrained, transaction volume cannot recover as strongly as demand suggests it should, and the inability of first-time buyers to get a toehold on the housing ladder is the biggest single risk to the housing market recovery.”