Demand for houses increased in November but number of sellers fell

House Prices

Demand from home buyers rose last month.

Buyer demand for UK property increased in November.

The number of house hunters increased in November boosting demand for UK homes, according to the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA).

The monthly report shows that the average estate agency branch registered 241 people searching for a house last month, which is just over 10% higher than the figures for October.

It also highlighted that the number of sales remained relatively constant over the course of the last four months, with the average branch selling 7 properties, despite the onset of a Christmas lull usually experienced by the market at this time of year.

President of the NAEA Michael Jones said: “There is still clear evidence of demand for property in the UK housing market. In fact, given the restrictions on mortgage lending and the approach of Christmas, the true level of demand is probably higher than indicated by our figures. These are not window-shoppers. Our agents are continuing to make sales and it is particularly pleasing to see sales figures remain constant at this time of the year”.

However, the number of registered sellers fell in November and the percentage of sales made to first-time buyers fell from 23% to 19%.

Mr Jones said: “We would like to see more people bring their properties to market. There are two reasons why this isn’t happening. First, it’s coming close to Christmas and people don’t like to uproot their family during the holidays. Also, some sellers in our experience continue to have unrealistic expectations over the value of their property. These potential sellers are likely to be holding back in the hope of price rises during 2011”.

He added that the NAEA believes that prices are likely to remain stable for the coming year, dependant on interest rates remaining low.