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Housing market activity hots up

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The number of househunters signing up with estate agents rose by 8% in April.

According to figures released by the National Association of Estate Agents’ (NAEA), an average of 310 property seekers registered with each estate agency branch in April this year, an 8% increase on the average 286 in March.

The number of property sales also grew in April, at nine sales per branch compared with eight in March. This is the largest number of sales per branch recorded since June 2011.

The percentage of first-time buyers accounting for these sales also increased from 19% in March to 23% in April.

The supply of available properties edged up very slightly, from 60 per branch in March, to 61 per branch in April.

Mark Hayward, managing director of NAEA said:

“Our figures show positive movement in the housing market, with consecutive monthly increases in house hunters, sales and supply. The warmer months are traditionally a popular time for house hunters, and we’re pleased to note strong activity again at this point in the year.

“Lower lending rates combined with a host of Government backed schemes and a wider variety of mortgage products has helped push the market in the right direction. It is also pleasing to see the jump in numbers of first-time buyers purchasing homes as they take advantage of the low rates and help.

“The strong house sale numbers should be encouraging for potential home sellers who may have been biding their time due to previously fluctuating market conditions.”

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