Property prices fall as buyers shun market

Property prices fell again last month as interest from buyers plunged for the sixth month in a row.

New buyer inquiries slumped again in November and dropped at a faster rate than in October, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

It showed 44 per cent more chartered surveyors reported prices falling rather than rising in November, while the reading for transactions per surveyor slumped to its lowest level since June 2009 at 14.8 last month.

But the overall poll on prices marked a slight improvement on October with 43 per cent recording broadly stable prices over the past three months.

A lack of buyers in the market is continuing to weigh on property prices, with mortgage finance remaining a stumbling block for many, particularly first-time buyers.

RICS also said an earlier surge in properties coming on to the market was now fading as would-be sellers decide to hold off until the new year.

RICS spokesman Ian Perry said: "Despite some better economic data, fears over how future spending cuts will impact on the jobs market are clearly still weighing heavily on potential purchasers' minds, with many deciding to 'wait and see' until the new year."