UK house sales down 11 per cent

UK house sales were down 11 per cent at 869,000, according to figures from HM Revenue and Customs.

Unemployment and the difficulty of obtaining a mortgage have hit the number of sales, currently at half the volumes recorded before the financial crisis.

Transactions peaked at 1,671,000 in 2006 before plummeting to a record low of 859,000 in 2009.

Mortgage regulations are set to become even tighter while banks remain reluctant to lend, suggesting that a sales rebound is not imminent.