No let-up in falling London house prices, say chartered surveyors

Emma Haslett
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London house prices will fall over the next 12 months, the survey suggested (Source: Getty)

There has been "no real easing" in the pace of decline of London house prices, a survey has suggested, with 45 per cent of chartered surveyors in the capital saying they observed a fall in prices in the past three months.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said stamp duty, Brexit and the political climate had helped to push the 12-month indicator for the capital to -1 per cent, the second lowest reading of the year so far.

Meanwhile, five per cent more chartered surveyors said they had experienced a fall in sales in June, the fourth time in a row sales have fallen. However, the survey's respondents said they expected an increase in activity over the next 12 months.

Some 21 per cent said they had experienced a fall, rather than a rise, in property coming onto the market in the capital, for the first time since September.

“Perhaps not surprisingly in the current environment, the term ‘uncertainty’ is featuring more heavily in the feedback we are receiving from professionals working in the sector," said Sumon Rubinsohn, chief economist at RICS.

"This seems to be exerting itself on transaction levels which are flatlining and may continue to do so for a while particularly given ongoing challenge presented by the low level of stock on the market."

Read more: Double, double, London house prices bubble?

Falling prices

Last week, figures published by Halifax showed UK house prices fell 0.1 per cent in the three months to June, with prices falling one per cent between May and June.

At the time Martin Ellis, Halifax's housing economist, suggested rising inflation had put off prospective buyers.

“Although employment levels continue to rise, household finances face increasing pressure as consumer prices grow faster than wages. This, combined the new stamp duty on buy to let and second homes in 2016, appears to have weakened housing demand in recent months," he said.

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