The number of homes being bought and sold has fallen to its lowest since October

 
Emma Haslett
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Sales of homes across the UK have fallen thanks to affordability pressures (Source: Getty)

Here's another sign the UK's housing market is beginning to suffer: the numbers of homes bought and sold have fallen to their lowest since October last year.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, just under 97,000 homes were sold in June this year, down from 100,270 in May, figures from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) showed today.

The housing market is being hampered by lack of supply, with rising house prices making homes less and less affordable. Evidence suggests uncertainty over Brexit and new stamp duty rules have caused prospective sellers to stay put: last week the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said fewer homes are coming onto the market.

However, in June transactions were up one per cent on the year before.

Read more: Londoners, look away: The best (and worst) cities for house price growth

Housing transactions peaked in March last year at 170,230, the highest figure in 10 years. The rise came just before new rules were introduced which pushed stamp duty on second homes up three per cent.

"Of course, buyers can only purchase what is available on the market for sale, and as recent reports from other industry bodies [suggest], homes for sale in many areas of the country are approaching record low numbers, which may as yet be reflected in the number of transactions completed in the next few months," said Brian Murphy, head of lending at the Mortgage Advice Bureau.

"But what HMRC’s report today does suggest is that people still want to buy property, and that demand for housing would appear to have been undiminished."

Read more: Six charts showing what the Brexit vote has done to UK house prices

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