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‘Hesitant’ buyers and sellers as sales slow, says Connells

The sales market was “hesitant” during the third quarter of this year, Connells has reported.

New instructions were nearly 8% lower than in the previous quarter, and 2% lower than the same quarter last year.

Viewings were down 7% on the second quarter, and while 3% ahead of the third quarter in 2015, viewing levels in both September and October were 2% lower than in the same months last year.

The number of offers made in the third quarter this year was down 3% on the same period last year. Sales agreed were 8% lower.

The proportion of first-time buyers dropped to 14%, according to Connells’ mortgage arm.

In the lettings market, new applicants were up on the two previous quarters and 2% up on the same quarter last year.

The number of tenancies agreed were 5% up on a year ago, while average rents rose by 8%.

The findings are from data gathered across the whole group, which has almost 600 branches.

Connells Group is expecting a further 1.5% house price rise by the end of this year.