Surveys reveal housing sector activity boost

Julian Harris
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THE UK’S ailing housing sector has begun to show signs of life, according to two widely-regarded reports released yesterday and this morning.

Interest in residential properties from potential buyers grew at its fastest rate for nearly three years in October, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) revealed this morning.

The number of agreed sales also jumped at the quickest pace since December 2009, RICS’s latest housing market survey said.

The report contained further good news, with the supply of homes coming onto the market rising at its highest rate since April 2011, while prices were fairly stable. A net balance of seven per cent of surveyors reported lower prices, RICS said.

Meanwhile the Council for Mortgage Lenders (CML) yesterday reported a 13 per cent hike in home purchase loans in the third quarter of the year.

Yet the lending market remains choppy, the CML data showed, with loans falling sharply in September after a strong July and August. First time buyer loans also fell, CML said.