RICS: mortgage restrictions strangling housing market

The restrictions in the lending market continue to place a stranglehold on growth in the housing market, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

The group’s latest report suggests that house prices have continued to fall in July, with a balance of 24 per cent more surveyors reporting falling rather than rising prices last month. This is largest negative reading RICS has recorded in its monthly reports since June 2011.

Looking ahead, RICS says it expects to see further falls, as prospective property buyers are still struggling to get the finance they need from cautious lenders. Peter Bolton King, RICS global residential director, said people are still going out and viewing property, but this is not progressing into transactions.

“Fewer sellers are putting their homes up for sale and the on-going problem of accessing affordable finance is not helping. If vendors want to sell their homes quickly, they will have to be realistic in their price expectations,” he said.