The outlook for the UK housing market darkened in August as uncertainty about Brexit takes its toll, according to the latest survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
The net balance of surveyors reporting that house prices have risen over the last three months increased to -4 in August from -9 in July, coming in ahead of expectations for a reading of -10.
However, Brexit-related uncertainty dented the outlook, with the near-term sales expectations net balance falling to -23 from -4, while the near-term prices expectations net balance declined to -24 from -13.
RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said: “It is hard to get away from the shadow being cast over the housing market by the seemingly never-ending Brexit saga. Indeed uncertainty is a theme that respondents continue to highlight as a negative influence on sentiment in survey after survey.”
Capital Economic economist Hansen Lu said: “In all, today’s data support our view that there will be no recovery in transactions or house price growth before the end of the year. We expect that to happen whatever the Brexit outcome, although a no-deal exit could lead to a sharp fall in housing transactions.”
By Michele Maatouk