The survey data suggest that the modest decline in mortgage rates since October falls a long way short of what would be required for house prices to bottom out. The fall in market interest rates since the “mini” budget has allowed the average quoted mortgage rate to ease from a peak of 5.7% in October to 5.0% in January. But even at that lower level, buying with a mortgage remains extremely expensive given the current level of house prices. That explains why demand remains in the doldrums and leading indicators point to another six months of house price falls at least.
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