Estate agents are warning that the house market could be about to slow in the south west. The new rules on mortgages introduced last week are already reducing the number of buyers according to some agencies.
Purchasers now face tougher questioning over their finances before being granted a mortgage. But a house price survey out today shows that prices are rising.
Whilst rent in the private housing sector reached another new high last month, the South West has bucked the trend, with rates dropping by 1.5% annually.
Demand for rental homes has rocketed in the last year as people struggle to get on the property ladder because they cannot raise a deposit or meet lenders' toughened borrowing criteria.
Although rents increased by 3.2% nationally to an average of £741pcm, rates in the South West fell to an average of £638.
The findings come a day after the Money Advice Trust announced that a record 12,000 tenants were struggling with arrears had contacted its national debtline this year - the biggest number in its 26-year history.
New figures have revealed the growing gap between what we're earning and how much it costs to buy a house in the West. According to the latest research, it's getting more and more difficult for people to get on the property ladder.
The hardest place to buy your first home is in the Cotswolds. Prices there have risen by eighty three per cent in the last 10 years, while wages rose by just five per cent.
The report from the National Housing Federation calls for a major building programme to improve the situation.
Protests are being held in Taunton tonight against revised proposals to build hundreds of homes of the edge of the town. Two years ago residents fought a successful campaign against previous plans to develop the site known as the Vivary Wedge.
Controversial plans to build thousands of homes at East Coker have been given the go ahead. South Somerset council held a full council meeting earlier today to discuss the proposals and have now reached their verdict.
Fifty members of the public are speaking at today's full council meeting in Yeovil. Many are upset that 2,500 homes might be allowed close to the historic village of East Coker. The Lib Dem led authority is considering plans to allow 16,751 homes in the district over the next 20 years.