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UK house price growth expectations hit 9-month low

Expectations of U.K. house prices growth and house demand lost momentum in May and the three-month outlook remained gloomy, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said June 8.

The number of people expecting growth in prices over the number expecting a decline shrank to 17% from 22% in the previous month. It was the softest reading since August 2016.

Short-term expectations for price growth slipped for a third consecutive month but national 12-month expectations remained strong. Over the next five years, respondents saw house price annual inflation averaging 3.5% across the whole country.

London continued to be the most affected by the declining trend, the institution said.

Agreed sales declined for a second month in May. The number of respondents predicting a fall in agreed sales was 8% more than those expecting an increase, compared to 9% fewer individuals expecting reduced sales than those expecting growth in the previous month.

The June 8 general election may be prompting more people to adopt a "wait and see" approach, the institution said.