Belfast Telegraph

Housing market returning to life, but not yet as we knew it

By Nicky Burridge

Activity in the UK housing market showed signs of picking up during February after suffering a lull at the beginning of the year, figures showed today.

There was an increase in both the number of buyers and sellers entering the market during the month, following falls in December and January, according to housing intelligence group Hometrack.

There was also a 10% jump in the number of sales agreed, compared to a 4% drop in January.

The pick up in activity led to house prices in England and Wales rising by 0.3% in February.

But despite the increases, the group warned that 2010 had seen a slow start to the year.

Richard Donnell, Hometrack's director of research, said that over the last eight years the growth in sales agreed over February had averaged 30%. “Yet this year (the increase in) the number of sales agreed has averaged just 10%.”

He said there had also been below average increases in the number of potential buyers and the number of homes coming on to the market.

Belfast Telegraph