House sales continued to fall in November, with the average number of transactions hitting a record low, according to the latest housing market survey from the RICS.

The number of people seeking to buy a home surged to a two-year high last month as bargain-seekers searched for repossessed and forced-sale properties at bargain-basement prices, new figures suggest.

Estate agents sold just 10.6 properties each on average last month – the lowest in the series’ 30-year history – down from 10.9 in October, which agents largely attributed to the increasing caution with which lenders were dispensing mortgages.

House sales were down by 55% in November on the same time last year, compared with 54% in October.

One glimmer of good news came from a slight drop in the number of surveyors reporting that prices were falling rather than rising – the balance of such reports improved to 76.5, up from 81% the previous month.

Financial Times, The Times