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Confidence high in housing market in spite of coming election

Homebuyers are not being put off by the prospect of an impending general election according to the UK's biggest property website, Rightmove.co.uk.

Traditionally, in the run-up to a general election, the UK property market quietens. But a survey of 15,000 Britons, conducted by Rightmove.co.uk, indicates that seven out of 10 are unconcerned about the election and actually believe the eventual result will provide a boost to the property market. In addition, 62 per cent of those questioned thought that now was a good time to buy a property, despite seven consecutive monthly rises in the average price of a UK home.

Figures from HM Revenue & Customs show that there were more than 100,000 sales in the month of December. This is up from 57,000 recorded in the same month in 2008. "Demand from those looking for houses has helped to underpin house prices through the past six months," said Henry Pryor, an independent housing market expert. However, Mr Pryor warns the market recovery is still fragile. "There are concerns over the long-term prospects with the impact of higher interest rates in the future and affordability issues still casting a long shadow. It's too early to conclude that the housing market is anything other than off the life-support machine."