House prices in England and Wales are set to fall by 2.1% between December to February, according to the reallymoving house price forecast.
Average prices in England and Wales are set to decline by 1.1% in December, remain stable in January and fall again by 1.1% in February 2020.
Rob Houghton, chief executive of reallymoving, said: “Buyers have driven hard bargains on deals agreed during the Autumn, as would be expected in the run up to Christmas and considering the wider political circumstances.
“But the market has shown resilience and stability throughout 2019 and as fears of a crash have faded, buyers have adjusted to the ongoing uncertainty and proven themselves keen to get deals done.
“Encouraged by cheap loans and favourable buying conditions, first-time buyers are a strong force in the market, accounting for 54% of all purchases.
“Transaction volumes remain down by around 12 – 15% currently, but If the Conservatives win the General Election as the polls suggest and manage to secure the UK’s withdrawal from the EU at the end of January, a rise in demand from these buyers could prompt a rapid bounce in prices as the uncertainty surrounding Brexit is resolved.”
Price falls in February are typical and despite the wider political context, the housing market is continuing to follow its usual seasonal pattern.
Encouraged by extremely low borrowing costs and a strong jobs market, increasing numbers of buyers and sellers are agreeing deals.
The housing market in England and Wales is on track to see positive annual growth of 2.6% in December, 2.2% in January and 4.5% in February 2020.
Just two regions of the UK, the East (3.1%) and the North East (0.3%) are expected to see average price rises during the three months to February 2020.
Values in the rest of the country are set to see prices decline at the beginning of the year.