Housing market will not recover before 2010

It is unlikely the housing market will begin to recover until at least 2010 and a large number of buyers believe they could get 15 per cent or more off the cost of a home.

These are the findings of a recent study from professional advice website Unbiased.co.uk.

Almost three-fifths (58 per cent) of respondents felt the market would continue to dip or stagnate for the remainder of 2009, while 50 per cent felt they could negotiate considerable discounts when buying a property.

Furthermore, almost 20 per cent of young adults aged 18 to 34 admit they will delay buying until they have saved a substantial deposit.

Mortgage lenders stricter criteria are also exacerbating the situation by putting off many first-time buyers, according to Unbiased spokesperson Richard Winder.

"There is a general sense that investing in bricks and mortar will be out of fashion for many months to come," he said.

Some homeowners could abandon plans to sell their property and invest in improving it with a conservatory instead, helping them make the most of the summer.

Insurance companies Saga and Halifax recently warned that garden thieves often choose the warmer months to operate so homeowners should be vigilant.