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Payment protection: December 'experienced lowest housing sales in eight years'

Adverse weather conditions in December meant the property market experienced its lowest sales in eight years, a report has found.

The National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) revealed that he average estate agent branch sold four properties in December 2010, which represents the lowest figure per agent of any month since January 2003.

Mike Jones, president of NAEA, said: "December is always a slow month for agents, but there is little doubt that these figures are worse than usual.

"We would hope to see a bounce-back in the next few months. Indeed, the New Year has begun very strongly and agents have reported a very busy couple of weeks that we are hopeful will continue."

Research revealed that the average estate agent branch had 64 properties on its books in December, which was the same as November.

It also revealed that the percentage of sales made to first-time buyers increased from 19 per cent in November to 25 per cent in December.

John Fieldman

Having worked in the city for 19 years, John's main focus is interest rates and corporate finance.

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