The National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) reported the encouraging news that their members sold more houses in April, than in any month since October 2007. The NAEA Market Survey for April, showed that on average estate agents sold 10 properties over the period, with the average sale price 6% lower than the asking price. The number of house hunters changed little, with first time buyers accounting for 23% of those looking to buy. Commenting, Chief Executive Peter Bolton King said “What we are beginning to see now are consistent positive indicators that have held firm or improved since the beginning of the year.”
The Council of Mortgage Lenders reported further falls in gross mortgage lending for April as the numbers fell to an estimated £10.4 billion, down 9% from March and 60% from April 2008.
CML Director General Michael Coogan said "It's still too early to spot a clear pattern of recovery in the housing market as some commentators have suggested. Activity remains weak, and we have said we will see volatility in monthly lending figures as we bounce along at the bottom of the market."
Brokers and advisers have been ranked as the most trusted within the financial services industry in a recent survey
In the latest Trust Index carried out on behalf of the Financial Services Research Forum, Nottingham University Business School found that brokers and advisers received the highest rating on trust and trustworthiness at 81.67. The study also ranked independent brokers higher than tied ones.
Credit card companies received the lowest rating at 71.55, but overall the sector was rated more trustworthy than both the National Health Service and the BBC.