Asking prices fall as London property boom falters

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Asking prices for properties in London are dropping, according to figures from home-listing website Rightmove. Its latest report said the sixth consecutive fall in asking prices in the capital suggests London’s boom phase is over.

That means home sellers are becoming more realistic about the price they want for their property, Rightmove said, while those who want a higher price are delaying putting their home on the market, stifling the supply and stopping prices falling even further.

Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove and housing market analyst, said: “End-of-the-boom prices normally readjust more quickly if there is an over-supply of sellers trying to exit their property investments.

“However, the lack of new listings in the typically pricier more central locations indicates that some would-be sellers are holding back, preventing a glut of competition from forcing prices downwards.

“Cash-rich owners are showing that they are able to sit tight instead of coming to market now and await their hoped-for price recovery.”

Capital lags behind rest of the UK

London’s housing market lagged behind the rest of the UK for all of 2017 in asking prices and that pattern has continued into 2017. Only the south-west reported a decrease in asking prices in the latest Rightmove report with the rest of the UK seeing an increase.

Rightmove identified Livingston in West Lothian as the town with the fastest sale agreed time of 17 days, with the Warwickshire towns of Rugby and Nuneaton the quickest English towns to agree sales with 21 days.

Mr Shipside added: “London is a myriad of different markets, under-pinned by a historical shortage of affordable supply. Rapid price rises in recent years have resulted as usual in a readjusting market, with overall year-on-year price falls in new seller asking prices of 1 percent.

“If fewer sellers come to market, then competition and downward price pressure will be less. However, unless you have an extra-special property, you may have to sacrifice some of the substantial price gains of the last few years to attract more buyer interest and effect a speedier sale.”

Rightmove monitored 134,556 asking prices from January 7 to February 10.

About the Author Frances Traynor

Fran is the content writer for Capital Conveyancing, producing articles on all aspects of the conveyancing process and around the UK property market in general. If there is a topic you'd like to see covered on these pages, please drop Fran a line on Frances@searchesuk.co.uk.

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