Housing Insight Report: November 2023

Economic uncertainty continues to pervade the UK economy and housing markets. In the residential sales sector, seasonal trends are undoubtedly weighing on market performance. In the lettings sector, supply and demand remain relatively static, but imbalanced with the equivalent of nine new applicants registered for each available property.

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This report is based on responses to a monthly survey of Propertymark member agents. Analysis is based on data provided by around 100 sales and 100 letting agents across the UK.

Residential sales

Prospective buyer numbers continue to fall

Market conditions remain challenging with the average number of new prospective buyers registered per branch continuing to decline. The number of registrations reduced from 53 in October to 49 in November. Whilst exacerbated by seasonal factors, a downward trend has been evident for some time.

Mortgage advances down

As anticipated gross advances increased in Q3 2023. This is the first quarterly increase since Q3 2022. However, the commitment to new lending decreased from 61,665 cases in Q2 to 51,471 in Q3, further pointing to a slowing market.

Residential lettings

Tenant demand is static

The number of new prospective tenants registered per member branch remained static in November. The seasonal trend line indicates that this is relatively typical for this time of year. A three-year comparison reveals that there is little difference in tenant demand levels between Nov 21, 22 and 23 (86, 77 and 82 respectively).

Stock levels remain challenging

As with demand, there has been little change in stock levels in November when compared to December. However, there remains a significant shortage of stock. On average, there were almost 9 new applicants registered per member branch for each available property. It is worth remembering that these figures do not consider applicants already registered and seeking to rent within the PRS.

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