2013 is to see house prices in the UK rise by two per cent, while the cost of renting is forecast to go up by approximately four per cent. Against a backdrop of continuing economic uncertainty, news of this is suggestive that confidence is tentatively returning to the housing market.
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) said that in addition to this, there will be a significant increase in the number of transactions taking place across the country, which is predicted to rise by three per cent to 960,000, compared to 2012's figure of 930,000.
While this is clearly an improvement on existing figures, Rics was keen to state that it is still some way off 2006's numbers, which saw an impressive 1.67 million transactions take place in the UK. However, these figures could be returning to such levels over the next few years.
"These tentative signs of recovery in the sales market should not blind us to the very real problems that still exist," commented Simon Rubinsohn, chief economist at Rics. "Even with the Funding for Lending scheme and some other government policies beginning to be felt in the mortgage market, many first-time buyers will continue to find it difficult to secure a sufficiently large loan to take an initial step on the housing market."
The expert added that with the alternative of renting, things are equally stressed and the amount of money prospective tenants are expected to part with is set to increase in 2013. What is critical, Mr Rubinsohn expanded, is that the government helps to ensure that conditions are in place that will "enable the stock of new housing to rise rapidly".
It was also found that next year, the prime central property market in the capital is expected to stay relatively stable, courtesy of the tax changes that were announced early in 2012. However, throughout the rest of London, prices will go up.
- Wednesday 02 January 2013