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House prices: Property stock hits record low with three regions in ‘most urgent need’


The average price of a property coming to market has jumped by 0.3 percent this month, or £852 in monetary terms, according to the UK’s largest property portal, Rightmove. The average price of a property coming to market is now £341,019 – 7.6 percent higher than in January 2021. First time buyer asking prices have also hit a new record high of £214,176 after a monthly jump of 1.4 percent.

Demand continuing to outstrip supply means the housing market will continue to be competitive for buyers.

The number of buyers enquiring about homes is 15 percent higher than this time last year.

More than 70 percent of the homes on estate agent’s books have already been sold, leaving buyers with slim pickings.

However, the number of homes available for sale per estate agency branch has hit another record low of 12 properties – down by two compared to last month.

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“People who have made it their New Year’s resolution to move are finding asking prices are within just one percent of the record from October last year, and are at the highest level ever recorded for first-time-buyer type homes.

“All of the signs suggest that prices are likely to continue to rise until more choice is available.

“Three regions are in most urgent need of new supply, the East Midlands, South West and South East of England, as they are now at unsustainable rates of annual price growth above 10 percent.”

But there are signs the tide could be changing when it comes to property stock.

The number of requests to an estate agent to value a property has increased by 44 percent in the first week of 2022 compared with last year.

Mr Bannister said Rightmove is seeing signs of a “better balanced market” this year.

The property expert also warned that this new supply could take a “little while to appear” but is encouraging to see.

He continued: “The speed at which we’ve seen the fresh choice that has come to market being snapped up by eager buyers over the past 18 months is a reminder to buyers to move fast and book a viewing with the estate agent as soon as a property that could be the one for you comes to market.

“Almost 40 percent of people enquiring about a home who have a property to sell say that they are yet to put it on the market.

“In the current market, where they are competing against other buyers who are able to move more quickly, this is likely to mean they’ll miss out on the home they want.

“To put yourself in the best possible position to proceed, you should become a ‘power buyer’, by making sure your current home is on the market or preferably sold subject to contract first, before starting the search for your new home.”

Chris Pearson, Director at Pearson Keehan in Hove, said the property market has “started extremely strong” with Brighton & Hove continuing to be “as popular as ever”.

He said: “The January property market has started extremely strong, which indicates buyers and sellers are starting to gain more confidence in finding their next home, with many more properties expected to become available in 2022.

“In the local area, Brighton & Hove continues to be as popular as ever, with an influx of buyers relocating from London and the surrounding areas looking for a lifestyle change.

“These numbers are continuing to increase since working from home has become more of an option.

“At present the demand certainly outweighs the supply, however we are optimistic that sellers are slowly returning to the market, as we have already seen an uplift in requests for property valuations in January.

“With competitive lending also still available it bodes well for the number of expected transactions, and we believe it to be another busy year ahead.”

Estate agency Chestertons said house hunters face competitive market conditions following steady buyer demand in December 2021.

Guy Gittins, CEO of Chestertons, said: “We expect the market to remain buoyant for at least the first quarter of 2022 as London is seeing the return of office workers, international students as well as Londoners who left the capital during the peak of the pandemic but are now seeking a return to the hustle and bustle of the city.

“London’s property market cannot currently meet the demand from house hunters which, inevitably, has led to a very competitive market for buyers and rising prices. To secure their ideal property, buyers are advised to put themselves in the best possible position by having their finances and paperwork in place prior to starting their search as it will enable them to act fast.”



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