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Industry survey marks start of post referendum confidence

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) last week announced the prediction that house prices will increase 3.3 per cent year on year, for the next five years.

Following a dip in recorded enquiries during August – two months after the referendum result for Britain to leave the European Union – RICS’ members are positive that house prices will continue to rise. This is also thanks, in part, to the Bank of England reducing inflation by a quarter of a per cent at the beginning of August.

RICS asked members to share their sentiment on the direction of the housing market, with more respondents suggesting that they expect sales to rise in the next three months, than those who expected sales to fall over the same period.

Furthermore, it suggested that there is still some way to go in order to meet the demand on new properties for future homebuyers. London and the West Midlands were highlighted as places where sales were expected to decline, with surveyors suggesting that the North West has the highest score in terms of growth – achieving a 35 per cent net score, the highest across any region of the UK.

Steve Errington, CEO of Story Homes, commented: “This announcement from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors is positive news for the residential property sector and it will certainly allay concerns following the referendum result. I would anticipate a continued and regular release of properties to the market.

“As RICS suggests, the shortage of properties was the reason behind house prices stalling but the concerning reality is that supply fails to meet demand, so as housebuilders, we still have a long way to go. There needs to be a concerted effort and clear accountability between local councils, the Government and housebuilders alike to bring more properties to eager homebuyers.

“It’s a very positive sign indeed that the North West and Cumbria are considered some of the regions on the rise. Following months of speculation and uncertainty, stability is precisely what the market is craving.

“It’s also important to note that this survey recognises sentiment, as opposed to data. Nevertheless, it’s a welcome reassurance to developers and the public alike.”

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