Weekly Summary: 22nd April 2022

DATA: ONS reported UK house prices rose 10.9% in year to February 2022

This was slightly higher than last month’s revised figure of 10.2% though London continues to record the lowest growth rate of just 8.1%. This data will be revised in the future.

DATA: ONS reported monthly GDP estimates grew by just 0.1% in February

This leaves GDP just 1.5% above its pre pandemic level two years ago amidst rising concerns about a recession later this year.

DATA: ONS reported higher consumer price inflation

The latest data shows CPI rose 7.0% in the year to March 2022 while RPI rose 9.0%.

DATA: ONS reported on the UK labour market

They reported the number of payrolled employees is now well above pre-pandemic levels and the unemployment rate is also now at pre-pandemic levels. However, the employment rate is still below levels prior to the pandemic and the annual change in regular earnings (excluding bonuses) is negative in real terms.

DATA: HMRC reported another rise in residential transactions

The provisional data shows UK residential transactions increased 2.6% in March compared to the previous month and were 16% higher than their pre-pandemic average. The annual change (-36%) should be ignored due to last year’s stamp duty holiday spikes.

DATA: Rightmove reported 11% annual rise in asking rents in Q1 2022

They report “Rents are now 15% higher than pre-pandemic” and this is the “most competitive market ever for tenants – tenant demand is up 6% and available properties are down by 50% compared to last year”.

DATA: Bank of England published Credit Conditions Survey – 2022 Q1

The survey found that Lenders expect the availability of secured credit to decrease over the next three months (to end of May) while demand for secured lending for house purchase is expected to increase.

DATA(PDF): RICS market survey reported a resilient housing market

The survey found “Buyer demand and sales continue to rise at a modest pace in March” while “New instructions indicator turns positive for the first time in twelve months”.

DATA: ONS investigated town characteristics and house prices

The analysis found “The three most important characteristics for predicting average property prices in towns were: the distance of the town from London, the types of jobs carried out by the town’s resident workers and the level of income deprivation in the town”.

POLICY: DLUHC revealed building safety agreement with developers

The agreement includes a commitment of £2 billion to fix developers own buildings with a further £3 billion raised through an expansion to the Building Safety Levy. The list of 36 developers is available here while the Secretary of State also sent a letter to the Construction Products Association.

POLICY: DLUHC announced ban on ground rents from 30th June 2022

They suggest “Ground rent charges will be banned on most new residential leases” and also applies to retirement homes.

REPORT: Tony Blair Institute on home ownership and the mortgage market

The report “suggests that boosting home ownership will require some mechanism to extend more risky lending to first-time buyers” and investigates mortgage markets in other countries to see how they balance the risk between financial stability and riskier lending.

REPORT(PDF): House of Commons PAC on regulation of private renting

The report highlights that the private rented sector is “failing far too often to provide safe and secure homes for renters”. They note that “Regulation by local authorities is under capacity and not providing appropriate and consistent protection for tenants” and there is the need for better data to understand the issues within the sector.

REPORT: Knight Frank updated their UK house price forecasts

They “forecast that UK prices will grow by 5% this year, with several factors acting as a drag on the rampant growth that has taken place in recent months”. These factors including rising mortgage rates, an increase in supply available for sale, and the race for space will “calm down”. Prices are forecast to rise 1% in 2023 as the cost of living squeeze bites.

REPORTS: Savills published a flurry of reports on UK student accommodation, UK build to rent, and development land values

The student accommodation report identifies a market surge while the build to rent report focuses on Scotland, and they ask “How far can development land value continue to grow”.

REPORT: TwentyCi reported on the property market in Q1 2022

They report there were 342,000 sales agreed in Q1, 16.9% higher than Q1 2019. They also found that “Aside from Inner London, the whole of England and Wales at a regional level has just under two months’ worth of property stock left to sell and overall, the available months of stock are down by almost half on historical norms”.

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