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House sales reach three year high

signsThe number of homes sold in the UK reached a three-year high during March as increased confidence in the market continued to translate into sales, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Chartered surveyors reported selling an average of 17.4 homes over the previous three months, the highest number since March 2010, and the third consecutive monthly rise.

Increasing stability was mirrored by prices as respondents across the country reported practically no movement during March. A net balance of 1% of surveyors reported price falls (down from 7%), meaning house prices across the UK have now been relatively stable for six months.

Its UK Housing Market Survey found that an increasing number of prospective buyers viewed property during March, with a net balance of 11% of surveyors reporting rises in new buyer enquiries, the highest reading since October.

The survey suggests that, on average, surveyors in the West Midlands have seen the biggest increase in homes sold since the start of the year, followed by those working in the London area. The sales trend appears flattest in East Anglia and the East Midlands.

'A buoyant, healthy property market is central to economic recovery and, while these are still very much early signs, it is encouraging that sales are beginning to pick-up. The increase in potential buyers getting out there and viewing property is particularly encouraging,' says Peter Bolton King, RICS global residential director.