A leading Huddersfield estate agency has reported improved house sales for the final two months of 2017 – but stressed more properties are needed to boost the market further.
Paul Keighley, of Bramleys at St George’s Square, said the agency logged a 40% rise in sales by volume in November compared with the same month last year and saw sales for December slightly up on December 2016.
Prices had also strengthened, Mr Keighley said, adding: “We are seeing a positive effect on prices. At times, prices realised have exceeded our expectations.”
But he said: “At the moment the market could do with a few more properties coming for sale, even though volumes are up on last year.”
He said a shortage of property was affecting all house types and all localities.
Mr Keighley said uncertainty surrounding Brexit was being cited as a reason for a slowdown in new instructions, but questioned that reasoning.
He said: “Unemployment is at an all-time low at the moment. People are saying ‘we don’t know what will happen, so we won’t move.’ As long as people are secure in their jobs there is no reason not to move.”
His comments come as a survey by accountancy firm KPMG predicted house prices will “pick up gradually” next year.
KPMG is forecasting average house prices to rise by 1.1% across Yorkshire and the Humber next year before reaching 2.5% in 2019. The model predicts growth of 3.2% in 2020 and 3.9% in 2021 before the region becomes the third fastest growing market in the UK with 4.4% growth in 2022.
Industry data suggests Yorkshire is one of the most affordable regions in the country with the average price of a property standing at 3.7 times average income for first time buyers.
Giles Taylor, head of property and construction at KPMG in Yorkshire, said: “House price growth in Yorkshire has suffered in the short-term, but the market is holding up relatively well and is likely to return to strength in the coming years.
“Of course, there are many differences between property markets across towns and cities and types of housing stock within the region, but prices are generally increasing. It is also encouraging that the region remains one of the most affordable areas in the country.”