The latest news from property data firm Hometrack points to a house price slowdown against the heat of the summer holidays.
While perhaps not the best news for those selling their homes, the report is sure to be welcomed by first time buyers who are demonstrating increasing confidence in the long-term recovery of the housing market, with the number of homes sold to this group climbing to their highest levels since 2007 in the first half of 2013.
With initiatives such as the government’s ‘Help-to-Buy’, ‘Funding for Lending’ and ‘NewBuy’ schemes making it easier than it has been since the recession for first time buyers to get a foot on the property ladder, despite a growing percentage of buyers having to pay stamp duty on top a deposit, the outlook is a positive one.
Indeed despite the seasonal slowdown house prices are still 1.3% higher than they were a year ago and with predictions of a market pick up this autumn, 2013 could see the highest increases in house prices since the economic downturn.
Perhaps even more positive, the Halifax has stated that the proportion of disposable earnings needed to put towards mortgage payments has dropped to 27%, way below the peak of 50% in autumn 2007 (and less than the long-term average of 36%).
With both buyers and sellers encouraged by the thought of a growing, affordable housing market, we can start to hope that any long term recovery is likely to be a slow but a lasting one.