Estate Agents Report Fall In Number Of House Hunters After Brexit Vote

The number of people hunting for a new home fell in the month following the UK’s Brexit vote, and was down by a third on the same month in 2015, according to the latest figures from estate agents.

The National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) said the average number of house hunters registered with each of its member branches dropped to 298, down from 330 in June and 462 a year previously.

The figure was the lowest since November 2013, when the housing market was starting to pick up steam after the financial crisis, and backs up other data suggesting activity in the market has been sluggish since the EU referendum.

Sales had slowed down before the vote took place on 23 June, in part as a result of a new stamp duty rate for second homes that came into effect on 1 April. But since the decision to leave the EU, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has reported further falls in sales and inquiries from buyers, and said price growth has faltered across the UK.

The NAEA said the supply of houses available to buyers had increased marginally during the month, from 37 per branch in June to 38 in July.

Those wanting to sell seemed increasingly willing to consider deals, as NAEA said eight out of 10 properties were sold for less than the original asking price, up from 72% in June.

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