Following a mixed property market in April, the Agency Express Property Activity Index for May shows a slump in properties coming onto the market and a further drop in property sales.
Property sales figures for the UK fell for a third consecutive month, down by 4.4%, as did new listings, by 3.7%.
Although a slowdown during May is not unusual, the decrease is greater than previous years. However, Agency Express reports that these figures may still be somewhat distorted by April’s Stamp Duty changes for buy-to-let landlords and second homebuyers.
Just three of 12 UK regions recorded increases in property sales, while just four saw rises in new listings.
The top performing regions in May are as follows:
Number of property sales
- Scotland – +11.1%
- Central England – +2.5%
- South West – +0.7%
Number of new property listings
- East Anglia – +12.1%
- London – +6.2%
- Scotland – +5.2%
- Central England – +3.3%
Scotland was the strongest region for property sales and new listings during May, with increases of 11.1% and 5.2% respectively. Agency Express reports that Scotland is the only region to consistently return robust figures for May.
The largest decrease recorded in May’s Property Activity Index was seen in the South East. New property listings fell by 16%, while the number of property sales dropped by 11.9%.
The Managing Director of Agency Express, Stephen Watson, comments: “During May, we’ve historically witnessed a slower pace throughout the UK property market and the figures for 2016 have largely remained true to trend.
“This time last year, it was clear to see that the general election had taken its toll on the UK property market. Now, as we head towards the EU referendum, it is predicted that we may see yet another slump in activity. With June being a buoyant month for the UK property market, it will be interesting to see what the Property Activity Index unfolds post-June 23rd.”