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House sales up as credit eases - RJA Properties: Lettings Agent Manchester
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20 May 2010

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Home information packs (Hips) will be consigned to history, the Government has announced.
17 Mar 2010

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Estate agents should be subject to the same levels of regulation as letting agents, it has been been stated.
22 Jan 2010

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Thousands of Britons with holiday and retirement homes in northern Cyprus face eviction after the Court of Appeal upheld a decision that a British couple must surrender disputed land.

House sales up as credit eases


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The housing market is continuing to improve with more options available to buyers and better prices for sellers.


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But estate agents are still cautious about their hopes for a continued improvement through the final quarter of the year.

The latest figures from the Land Registry, which monitors house prices in the UK, says the average price for a house in Bracknell Forest in July was £193,611 – the highest price since January and a continuation of an upward trend which began in April.

The numbers of houses being sold in the borough is also on the rise – the latest figures show in May, 103 houses were sold in Bracknell Forest compared to just 61 in the depths of the slump in January.

Estate agents across the area say the improvement is owing to a number of reasons including a better range of borrowing options available to potential buyers.

Ian Macbeth, manager of Prospect estate agents in Charles Square, Bracknell, said: “Our mortgage advisor has seen it get more comfortable for people to get mortgage products in the last six to eight weeks or so.

“The requirements for people to get mortgages have become more reasonable – you don’t have to have pristine credit and earn £100,000 any more.”

Greg May, director of Flower Independent Financial Advisors, the firm operated by estate agent Romans for mortgage advice, said: “Mortgage lending is becoming increasingly accessible with some lenders launching new products to finance their moves.

“It’s very encouraging to see lenders using innovation to help first time buyers enter the housing market.”

Barry Aldridge, manager of Richard Worth in High Street, said: “Certainly things are going the right way.

“Prices have been recovering and houses are selling very quickly.

“At the moment we’ve got more business going through our books than ever before.”

Traditionally the period from August to Christmas is a quiet one in the housing market and agents are sending mixed messages as to what to expect over the coming months.

Andy Freegard, manager of Carsons in Charles Square, said: “It’s really hard to call.

“They’re getting better but mortgages are still hard to get – banks aren’t freeing up all that much money and all you need is one missed payment in your credit history and you won’t be able to get one.

“Houses aren’t exactly flying out of our doors as we hoped they might.

“I think it’s the lack of what the banks call quality buyers due to the constraints on mortgage lending.

“We just need a little change in that and things could really improve but with there still being a lot of unemployment around it’s still really hard to predict what might happen.”

Helen Brand, chief executive of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, said: “While the situation may not worsen, the view from finance professionals is that a sustained recovery is still some way off.”

However, Peter Coles, Romans’ Bracknell managing director, said: “There’s plenty of evidence that this recovery is sustainable so, for people wanting to trade up, now is the perfect time to move as the gap between the value of their home and the price of more expensive properties will start to widen as the recovery gathers pace.”

At the height of the market in January 2008 the average price for a house in the borough was £230,502 but in March this year that price had dropped to just £186,452.

According to estate agents the best areas for sales in Bracknell Forest are Binfield, Forest Park, Bullbrook and Harmans Water.

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