Buyers Returning to UK Housing Market, Reveals Hometrack Survey

The UK [B]Hometrack Housing Survey[/B] revealed that real estate prices fell -7.7% in the year to July, the slowest pace of decline since October 2008. Details of the report revealed that property sellers were able to secure 91.5% of their initial asking price in the final transaction, marking the eighth consecutive month that their bargaining power has improved; meanwhile, the average time a property spent on the market before being sold fell to 9 weeks, the lowest in over a year. On balance, the survey reinforces reports of a rebound in buying interest that has been noted in other recent data. That said, rising unemployment may prove to be a barrier to a near-term rebound in real estate prices: the jobless rate is expected to top approach a whopping 9% by the end of this year, trimming incomes and hindering Britons’ ability to pay their mortgages. This is likely to boost repossessions, flooding the market with fresh supply and sending property values downward.