Rightmove – House prices close to all-time high
The price of property coming to market rose by 0.8% this month, down from the 2.3% surge seen following the election but just £40 short of a new all-time high, according to the latest Rightmove house price index.
The number of sales also rose 12.3% nationally and 26.4% in the capital, compared to the same reporting period (12th January – 8th February) in 2019.
Rightmove believes that as market momentum continues to build ahead of the spring moving season, there is likely to be a series of new price records in the coming months.
Nationally, new seller numbers are failing to keep pace with the jump in sales activity, although they are finally starting to rise with over 110,000 properties coming to market over the month, up by 2.1% compared to the same period last year. This is the first year-on-year rise in new supply seen for 13 months.
Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove, commented: “There is a boom in buyer activity outstripping the rise in the number of new sellers, which we expect to lead to a series of new price records starting next month. The average price of newly-marketed property is just £40 below its all-time high from June 2018, with the typically busy spring market still to come. This means that spring buyers are likely to be faced with the highest average asking prices ever seen in Britain.
“Buyers who had been hesitating and waiting for the greater political certainty following the election outcome may be paying a higher price, but they can now jump into the spring market with renewed confidence. After three and a half years of Brexit uncertainty, dither, and delay, many now seem to have the 2020 vision that this is the year to satisfy their pent-up housing needs.
“It’s the first time for over a year that we have seen any sign of a return of seller confidence, albeit lagging behind the surge in numbers of early-bird buyers. Owners coming to market this spring face the best selling prospects for several years, with good demand for the right properties at the right prices. However, sellers should be careful not to get carried away with their pricing, as this is still a price-sensitive market with stretched buyer affordability. Those who over-price risk missing out on the window of increased activity that could run at least until we approach the next Brexit deadline at the end of the year. Now could be an excellent time to get on the market and sell, seizing the opportunity of achieving a quick sale at a decent price.”
“The fundamentals are sound, with lenders keen to lend at low fixed rates, real wages rising, and record high employment. The bounce in our statistics seems to show that many buyers and sellers see the election result as giving a window of stability, so if you’ve been holding back on account of Brexit, 2020 could well be your year to move.“
Source: Financial Reporter