Like many others, I'm in the habit of talking about "the housing market" in general terms. Surely this is no more helpful than talking about the average person's health, or the average temperature and climate of the Earth. In reality, there's a host of niches and scenarios - it's a sort of ecological system.
The London-based retiree looking for a bungalow in the South or South-West; the cereal packet family-of-four headed by a breadwinner; the pair of teachers deciding whether one can afford to go part-time; the buy-to-renter who sold out in time; the one who didn't; the rich guy dashing off a cheque for a Park Lane house to add to his international collection; the divorcee who bought out her ex-husband's share of the family home because she just can't let go; the car worker who's just lost his job; the Last Of England emigrant; the oldie looking for a sheltered housing apartment.
Houses sold by estate agent, by private treaty, by auction; houses sold, repossessed, swapped, abandoned, divided, combined, left as legacies, sold for care costs, seized by the law, occupied by squatters; flats, terraced houses, semis, detached dwellings. Brick and mortar, cruck, stone, straw bale, genuine and mock Tudor, eco.
Houses in central London, the London boroughs, the Home Counties, the provinces, Wales, Scotland and South-West; houses in thriving, decaying and recovering cities; in towns, villages, hamlets, lonely moors, islands; even a house on a pair of rocks on Newquay's beach.
How can one generalise meaningfully?