The housing boom is spreading across the country, with rapidly rising prices and long queues of buyers no longer restricted to London, experts are to announce.
Property sales in the first three months of 2014 reached a six-year high as the market recovered on a “truly national” scale, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics).
Activity is at levels last seen in early 2008, before the banking crisis took hold, and is spreading to the Home Counties and beyond, figures suggest.
The trend is “striking in that it is clearly broadening out”, said Simon Rubinsohn, a Rics economist. “There has been a sense that it was one story for London and a very different outlook everywhere else, with perhaps a few other city centres edging ahead. But that is not the case any longer,” he added.
“Now that the housing market recovery is well and truly under way and mortgage finance is more readily available, buyers seem to be looking to test the market right across the country, not just in the usual hotspots of the South East.”