Date Published 10 October 2012
The UK housing market could pick up between now and the end of the year, the RICS reported.
Although September was a flat month, with price falls reported in all regions apart from London, RICS members are predicting transaction levels to increase and the rate of price falls to slow.
Surveyors are basing their expectations on greater mortgage availability.
However, advice site Moneyfacts has warned that the number of first-time buyer mortgages has increased by just seven in the three months since the Funding for Lending scheme launched. The site says the scheme has made almost no difference to that part of the market, although it has boosted lending choice where people with large deposits were already well serviced.
Peter Bolton King, RICS global residential director, said: `The housing market was relatively flat during September but surveyors are optimistic that the run-in to Christmas could see an increase in activity in many areas of the country.
`Prices are still dipping, but at a much lower rate than seen in previous months.
`Despite this, problems still exist and more needs to be done to get the market moving. Unrealistic expectations on the part of vendors seem to be stalling the transaction process.
`Meanwhile, although the Funding for Lending scheme appears to be improving mortgage availability, those at the very bottom of the housing ladder are still struggling.`
Separately, Connells Survey & Valuation reported a 30% rise in the number of valuations in September compared with August – although the number was still 4% lower than in September last year.
Property portal Zoopla also said that in an online survey of nearly 6,500 home owners, 63% expect house prices to go up in the next six months.