Hooray for housebuilders.

Persimmon sees housing recovery

Published:  17 November, 2009

YORK: Housebuilder Persimmon told the City yesterday that trading over the last three months has been much brighter than a year ago.

The company has booked £500m sales for next year – 50% more than this time in 2008.

The upbeat trading statement contrasted with a survey from property website Rightmove, which has found that asking prices have recently fallen by 1.6% as the housing market enters its traditional seasonal slowdown.

New sellers in England and Wales dropped their asking prices by an average of £3744 during the four weeks to 7 November, which could mark the start of a cool period until February.

In a sign that the property market has not fully recovered. Yesterday, Persimmon raised "significant concerns regarding the availability of mortgages", particularly for first time buyers. Any significant increase in unemployment over the coming months would also be a worry.

The housebuilder said people have been buying more private houses and fewer apartments, boosting the average sale price 6% to £173 000 over the four months to mid-November.

There has also been "modest price growth" in some regional markets.

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