Welsh house sales hit a three and a half year high

  • Prices decrease but this reflects increased activity by first-time buyers
  • Prices fall by £1,750 from the start of the year


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Oliver Blake, Managing Director of Reeds Rains estate agents: “The housing market is recovering quickly across most parts of the UK, but not in Wales. House prices have fallen in nine out of the last twelve months. They fell by £250 in July and are £2,241 lower than twelve months previously.

“Things are starting to look up though. First-time buyer activity has had a major boost, providing some comfort amid the trials and tribulations. Sales in Wales reached a three and a half year high in July, thanks to the influence of first time buyers. The Government’s Funding for Lending and Help to Buy schemes have had a positive impact, and the Welsh housing market is slowly but surely moving forward on the road to recovery.  Increased mortgage supply and stronger competition between lenders, resulting in better pricing, have lifted the market.

“The fall in the average house price has been partly caused by the increase in first time buyer activity. Most of the properties being purchased are at the lower end of the price spectrum which drags down the overall average. The rise in first-time buyer activity will make the market more fluid as sales from second-time buyers and home movers will result in levels rising which will start to push prices back up again.

“On a smaller scale, it is clear, regional house price growth is directly linked with the way each area’s immediate economy operates. Employment rates and job expectations are key factors in determining the level of housing demand in the UK. Prices fell in 13 local authorities and rose in 9, and the region with the largest monthly fall (Merthyr Tydfill) had the second highest unemployment rate in Wales. Demand for properties is high, but many Welsh first time buyers are finding it tough to secure a mortgage. Many are still locked out of the market altogether and are having to stay in rental accommodation, which is putting pressure on their personal finances and making it tough to save for a deposit.

“The Government’s role is crucial in driving the rate of recovery forward, as the Welsh market is in need of a revival in new properties in order to promote a healthy housing market. The good news is the lending environment has warmed up and will continue to unlock the pent up demand from first-time buyers.”


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