Rightmove's latest monthly House Price Index reveals that the average price of property coming to the market has dipped by 0.5% (-£1,505) compared to October, despite continuing strong buyer demand. Their revised prediction of a 7% annual increase in house prices in 2020 appears to be on track, with the annual rate of growth now at 6.3% with a month remaining.
Compared to October 2019, Rightmove are reporting:
the strongest activity is in the price bands and regions where buyers are set to make the biggest stamp duty savings ie. up to £500,000.
that national agreed sales volumes are up 50%
an increase of 67% in the number of sales going through
there has been a 106% uplift in sales agreed
it's taking 23 days less to secure a buyer in the £400,000-£500,000 band
The more expensive southern regions are faring better than the national average - with a 72% uplift in sales agreed in the East of England and 69% in the South East
Buyers who were temporarily uncertain about whether to list their property for sale in the run-up to this second lockdown in England (which started on 5 November), took the plunge and listed their properties for sale. As a result, activity within the first six days of the second lockdown saw demand up 49% compared to November 2019.
Rightmove have reported that new sellers appear to be pricing more realistically so they improve their chances of achieving completion before the stamp duty deadline ends on 31 March 2021.
Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s Director of Property Data says:
“Given the ongoing mini-boom, prices might have been expected to rise again this month, but instead we have a slight dip which could be a result of some new sellers pricing more realistically to have a better chance of agreeing a sale in time to benefit from the stamp duty savings on their onward purchase. We know from a recent Rightmove study that sellers are twice as likely to sell if they agree a sale based on the first price at which their property goes on the market, something that’s even more important now as we move towards the end of March and the end of the stamp duty holiday. If your initial asking price is too high then you’re less likely to get an offer even after you’ve cut your price back to a more realistic level. Our revised prediction of a 7% annual increase in prices in 2020 looks to be on track, since the annual rate has jumped to 6.3% with a month to go.”
“After some brief hesitation as people waited for the detailed government guidance and legislation, it’s now clear that home-movers are carrying on with their searches and sales during this second lockdown in England with the market staying open. This ongoing activity means that the processing log-jam continues to pile up because of the sheer number trying to reach the finish line by the end of March. With 650,000 transactions in the pipeline, millions of people are on tenterhooks until their sale or purchase has completed.”
Our experience reflects what Rightmove have shared. A number of our new clients were initially of the view that the lockdown meant that the housing market was closed! We've been busy explained that this lockdown is in fact different and in fact the housing market remains open.
Even with the small dip in asking prices highlighted this month by Rightmove, the graph indicates the continuous trend in asking prices over the last five years. It's also worth highlighting that this present dip is similar to the one earlier in the year when we started the first lockdown, although these two lockdowns are different because this time round, the housing market remains open.
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