House hunters have returned to the UK’s residential property market since the June vote to leave the EU, but are struggling to find available homes.
This is according to the latest survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), which found that homebuyer demand increased for the second consecutive month.
Approximately 10% more respondents are interested in purchasing a property now, compared to a month earlier, the research revealed.
However, despite more people being ready to buy, there are fewer properties coming on to the market.
As a result, prices are rising, with 23% more respondents experiencing price growth rather than decline compared to September.
Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, commented: “It will be interesting to see what measures - if any - the Chancellor will put in place [in the Autumn Statement] to increase housing supply and create a more affordable market.”
With the Autumn Statement due in a matter of weeks, sales operation director at First Complete Toni Smith has called on the Chancellor to cut stamp duty for first-time buyers.
She told Mortgage Strategy that the UK’s property market would benefit if buyers at the lower levels were given some assistance. She added that this particularly important given that the Help to Buy scheme is due to end in December and that inflation is rising, squeezing those who have yet to get on the property ladder.
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