In Landmark’s Q4 property trends report, data shows that the number of mortgage valuations fell sharply from September onwards as mortgage products were pulled from the market in response to Autumn’s fiscal event.
Landmark suggests this hampered movers’ ability to progress with transactions.
Similarly, it shows subdued sold subject to contract and search levels throughout Q4.
These were both down 35% in December vs December 2019 as consumers waited for mortgage rates to stabilise.
However, SSTC volumes dropped more steadily from September onwards as affordability concerns hit.
The report notes that where the expectation was for a high reduction in activity this quarter compared to 2019, it is reassuring that volumes appear to be as high as they are.
While the start of Q4 indicated strong supply, with listings hovering at 6% less than the 2019 levels, the lack of sales eventually began to have an impact in December.
The report suggests that a drop in December may indicate home buyers are waiting for the new year to take action.
It highlights that there may be a return to more normal supply levels in January.
Landmark Information Group chief executive officer Simon Brown says: “We can clearly see that the cost-of-living crisis cannot be ignored as a key influence on the UK’s property market in 2022.”
“For many home-movers, while there is still strong appetite to move, there are indications that most are waiting for the economic headwinds to calm before making any concrete decisions.”
“However, while many moves are on hold, transaction times have continued to creep up, with our latest data showing it now takes 133 days on average to complete a home move. This highlights how the UK’s home-moving process is still in dire need of modernisation to make sure it works for movers and industry alike.”
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