Home prices fall for third straight month as mortgage rates hold back buyers

The downward trend in home prices gained momentum toward the end of 2022. Photo: Matt Dunham/AP

House prices in the UK fell for the third month in a row in December according to surveyors, along with a fall in the number of new homes. property list coming to market with all agreed sales.

A balance of 42% of professionals across the UK reported seeing a fall in prices, rather than an increase, according to a December 2022 survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics).

All regions in England are recording softening prices to some degree, with data pointing to East Anglia and the South East seeing the biggest declines, according to the survey.

There was also a drop in the number of new real estate listings coming on the real estate market and there was an overall decrease in sales agreements.

Rics said they will buy homes that have been inflated by high mortgage rates and the difficult cost of living.

“The latest Rics housing survey highlights the challenges that are emerging in the housing market as new buyers struggle with higher finance costs and uncertainty in the economic outlook,” the report said. said Simon Rubinsohn, Rics chief economist.

Read more: More than 1.4 million households are facing mortgage increases

“Currently, the feedback about the rental market shows again the need for collective thinking about the establishment of a viable sector that is satisfactory for private investors and ‘affordable’,” he added.

In the negative of the UK in general, house prices in Scotland and Northern Ireland are still in good territory, although it is a big change compared to the strong growth reported in the six months ago, the study was revealed.

The December survey also asked whether property professionals are seeing more interest from buyers in more energy-efficient homes.

About 40% of those surveyed answered yes, but more than 60% did not see this trend, said Rics.

However, 61% of respondents said that energy efficient homes are holding their value.

Looking at the rental market, the demand for tenants increased in December according to the balance of 28% of contributors.

However, this is the lowest reading since February 2021, indicating that the pace of demand growth is slowing on the rental market.

Read more: Home mortgages fall 23% as interest rates rise

Sarah Coles, senior personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The house is no longer the winner, and prices have fallen for three consecutive months. The trend is increasing, as many representatives say that prices are falling every month, and all regions are seeing a drop in prices. The picture looks particularly bleak in East Anglia and the South East, where prices are falling sharply.

“There is one spark of hope. Permanent mortgage rates are on the way down, which could be enough to entice more buyers back into the market. However, the pressure from high prices may prevent many of them. Inflation may be past its peak, but it is falling at a glacial pace, so it will continue to rise. cost less time.

“With Energy prices set to rise by another £500 in April – and the government’s cuts at the same time – consumers will get more for their money .”

Watch: How much money do I need to buy a house?

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