UK house prices rose by 0.9% in June, according to the latest survey from the Nationwide building society.  House prices have now risen in three of the last four months, suggesting that the improvement that began to show up in March represents more than just statistical noise. Last week, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) reported that completed house sales in the UK had risen again in May, to their highest level since last October.
The Bank of England too reported that the number of mortgages approved by lenders, but not yet lent, had risen for the fourth month in a row in May.
This suggests that the revival in buying and selling seen this spring may continue into the summer. Certainly I can say first hand that there continues to be steady interest from buyers, with most estate agents reporting that business is definitely getting back on track and indeed most are recruiting again to cope with the increasing demand from buyers. Mortgages too seem easier to obtain and the return of job security to some degree seems to be helping buyers to feel confident to take the opportunity to buy at what seems the bottom of the market. Sellers are also seizing the opportunity to trade up, realizing that they may be selling for less but also buying for less, which in the majority cases leaves them in a far superior situation than if they’d have sold at the top of the market. Repossessions too already seem a thing of the past with calls from receivers drying up altogether over the last couple of months. And as the smiles return to our once forlorn faces, it seems the light at the end of the tunnel shines a little brighter.