Housing market getting closer to supply and demand balance – Bank of England

The housing market is getting closer to an equal balance between demand and supply, the Bank of England has claimed on the basis of input from agents

The central bank’s summary of business conditions for the second quarter of 2017 recorded weakening housing demand.

It said: “Activity in the housing market had been subdued in most parts of the United Kingdom, in line with previous updates.

“Demand had weakened recently relative to supply, bringing the market closer to balance.”

The report, based on feedback on the economy among 12 regional agents, said: “The prime London market remained depressed, and there were signs that weaker sentiment was spreading to surrounding areas.”

Looking at mortgages, the report said products remained competitive, with more available at higher loan-to-value ratios, but warned that availability of lending remained constrained for borrowers with impaired credit histories.

As reported in other surveys, agents found mortgage lending for buy-to-let had remained subdued, “partly reflecting recent taxation and policy changes”.

It added: “Pressure on margins was forcing many small lenders to focus more on niche segments of the market such as shared ownership, older borrowers and self-build.”

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