Action needed to cope with 'soaring demand' for homes

houses Interest from buyers is rocketing, say chartered surveyors

Chartered surveyors have called for urgent action to cope with "soaring demand" from house buyers.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics), also indicated that not enough houses are coming on to the market.

Rics said that "rocketing interest" from potential buyers was "dwarfing" the number of properties for sale.

In the meantime, official figures out later are expected to show UK house prices hitting another record high.

The comments from Rics accompanied the results of its latest monthly survey of its members.

It measured the opinion of 300 chartered surveyors across the country.

In October those reporting price rises outnumbered those reporting no rises by the highest margin since 2002.

Renting

The government's Help to Buy scheme is one reason for that, said Rics.

But it warned that a lack of houses being put up for sale is proving problematic.

"The amount of homes currently up for sale is still nowhere near enough to keep up with demand," said Simon Rubinsohn, the chief economist of Rics.

"In order for the market to function correctly, this imbalance urgently needs to be addressed." he said.

By contrast, the survey shows declining interest from people wanting to rent accommodation.

The proportion of surveyors reporting a rise in interest from potential tenants was at its lowest for a decade.

Figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) out later are expected to show UK house prices at a new record high.

Last month the ONS reported that prices across the country are higher than at any time since the survey began in 1968.

It said prices were rising in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but were falling in Scotland.

However, the Land Registry has reported that the average house price in England and Wales is £167,063, which is still 8% below its peak in November 2007.

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