House prices have continued to increase, despite warnings that next year could see significant falls.
As previously reported, analysts have warned that 2010 could see another crash, with as much as 10 per cent being wiped off the value of homes. For now, though, prices seem to be increasing, with November representing the fourth consecutive month of rises according to RICs.
It is thought that prices are being pushed up by the lack of available stock. Many people are still not selling properties as a result of the depressed market - but there are still a number of cash-rich buyers. This discrepancy between supply and demand has resulted in an increase in average asking prices.
This discrepancy can be illustrated by the fact that new buyer enquiries have increased at a far higher rate than the number of houses under instruction.
Low transaction volumes are, broadly speaking, good news for professional landlords, as an increasing number of people are being forced to continue renting rather than buying a property. But, while it will be some time before transaction volumes reach their pre-crash level, it seems that the mortgage market is gradually easing.
Lenders are now demanding smaller deposits, removing one of the main barriers faced by potential buyers. This is good news for prospective buy to let investors looking to take advantage of relatively low prices.