Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors suggests shafts of light in housing gloom

The RICS report its members state that interest among potential buyers had risen for the seventh month in a row and was now in positive territory for the first time since October 2006. 14% more chartered surveyors had witnessed a rise in buyers' enquiries than those who had seen enquiries fall.

"The rise in interest reflects both the drop in asking prices and recent cuts in interest rates, " said RICS.

London, however, remains the most affected of the UK regions seeing the lowest level of sales currently, with just seven per estate agent, followed by Wales and East Anglia.