Sales of homes in the UK have remained somewhat subdued, according to figures published by HM Revenue and Customs, reflecting a lower number of home transactions in May than in April.
The number of homes sold in the UK in May has been lower than expected, fuelling fears that economic uncertainty and tighter mortgage conditions may be affecting the wider economic recovery.
While total mortgage borrowing was up on the period, growing by 12% on the month, it is thought that some buyers are still finding it difficult to move, particularly given the economic uncertainty around public sector cuts and the increasing deposits required for first-time buyers to move onto the property ladder.
The figures show that sales in May topped 68,000, down from 70,000 in April and down from 71,000 on the May 2010 figure, according to data published by HMRC, with lenders reporting that they anticipate further sluggish sales over the next few months.
Some analysts have suggested that stagnation and possibly even a receding housing market could have a wider impact on the construction sector, with many construction firms and tradesmen reliant on volume in the housing market to find business.
To further add to the woes of these figures, the Council of Mortgage Lenders, which represents lenders nationwide, said that demand for home loans would continue to flat-line over the coming months.