Housing confidence at three year high

Almost a quarter (24%) of people plan to change their current property either by extending or carrying out home improvements. A further 14% said they want to sell their house in the coming year. Finances are also high on the agenda with 11% planning to either pay off their mortgage, make overpayments or re-mortgage in the coming 12 months.

Steve Fletcher, head of Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks retail network, said: "We have seen optimism returning to the property market over the last few years and this seems to be growing with more people planning house changes whether it is to move, make home improvements, pay off their mortgage or even help a family member to get onto the property ladder.”

The results – which show a consistently improving picture in the three years since homeowners were first asked about confidence levels – were revealed in the latest Annual Housebuyers Survey by the Banks. The survey supports the latest findings from the Council of Mortgage Lenders which reported that 2014 lending levels were the highest since 2007.

Among those surveyed by the Banks in 2013, 62% of people said they planned to simply stay in their current home. The figure dropped to 58% a year later and dipped by a further 17% to 41% in 2015.

Of those planning a move in the next 12 months, Londoners are most likely to move with 22% putting up a 'For Sale' sign. Within that group, some 8% of Londoners plan to move up the property ladder, a further 8% have aspirations to relocate and 6% hope to downsize. In contrast only 10% in Scotland and 8% of those in Yorkshire plan to move in 2015.

The optimism can also be seen with 44% expecting the value of their home to increase, while 54% think it will remain the same. Men are more optimistic about an increase with half of those surveyed anticipating an increase in value compared to 38% of women. Of those who believe the value of their home will increase the main reason is the increase in property prices in their local area, as well as an upturn in demand.

Confidence is at its highest in London where 64% believe their property will increase in value in 2015 in sharp contrast to Wales where just less than a quarter (24%) share a similar view.