Over the past few months statistics have shown that property prices in the UK have increased, but the latest survey from Rightmove shows that asking prices for new listings declined over the summer. In spite of this the company is forecasting an increase in asking prices this fall.
According to the article in Propertywire.com prices slowed down over the summer due to the good weather, and as a consequence many sellers are waiting to market their properties this fall. People who did list their property over the summer had to price them more competitively, asking an average of 1.5% less in August compared to July. This pricing tactic saw the number of new sellers drop by 9% and figures were at their lowest level since February. However the change in seasons has seen an increase in activity and Rightmove is prepared to see asking prices surge. This has led the company to increase its forecast for this year from 4% to 6% due to the growing imbalance between supply and demand. In spite of the fall in asking prices, the average listing price is still up by 7.2% this year so far.
In August a total of 96,330 properties were listed which is the lowest total since February. In spite of increased optimism over the property market, experts have pointed out that it's far from being back on its feet as buyers still need to have the ability as well as confidence to take on more debt, and many need to see more concrete signs of an economic recovery.
Even though the number of buyer transactions has begun to increase with transactions up by 8% and mortgage approvals up by 16% compared to the same period last year, the number of new sellers has increased by just 0.5%. The lack of supply combined with increased demand is likely to result in prices rising in the period directly before Christmas, but this could be confined to areas where demand is highest while properties in less popular areas could still take quite a while to sell.
Figures from Rightmove show that the fall in asking prices bottomed out at the end of last month and began increasing with the end of school vacations. Last month traffic on Rightmove was up 20% compared to last year, but the average number of properties per estate agency has fallen from 72 to just 70.