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‘You need greater buying power' – Property warning as UK house prices reach record high

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The average property now sells for £338,462, with prices having risen by 0.3 percent, or £1,091, since July, according to the latest data published by Rightmove’s House Price Index. The new figures have prompted property experts to praise the continued demand, while highlighting the small increase had indicated a “stabilisation” in the rate of house prices.

Despite property sales typically decreasing over the summer period, this year, demand in the housing market had remained high.

According to Rightmove, the rate of buyer demand per a property had increased by 50 percent compared to the same period before the pandemic.

Reflecting on the current housing market, Tim Bannister, Director of Property Data at Rightmove said: “While the holiday-starved took their break over summer, the high ratio of buyer demand to properties for sale means that the property market remains stock-starved despite the summer lull lessening overall activity. 

“Competition among potential buyers to secure their next home is now more than double what it was this time in 2019.” 

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“Proof that you are mortgage-ready or can splash the cash without needing a mortgage will also help you to get the pick of the housing crop,” added Mr Bannister.

Despite the continued demand, the average house price has increased by just £15 since July, prompting Rightmove to highlight a “stabilisation of the pace of price rises”.

The report attributed this to a number of factors including a reduction in the stamp duty tax holiday scheme, limited buying affordability, and a smaller price growth across the capital. 

The housing market has reflected a different picture in parts of the country compared to areas of London. The South West, Wales, East Midlands, East of England and the South East, saw an increase in house prices of more than eight percent, while property prices in Greater London rose by just 0.8 percent.

The difference in price growth has been attributed to the housing supply.

At the beginning of the month Rightmove reported a rise of 14 percent in the number of properties on the market, compared to the previous two weeks. 

Reflecting on the increase in supply, Mr Bannister said: “This 14 percent increase in the number of new sellers coming to market in the first half of September is only an early snapshot, but autumn is traditionally a busy period, as those owners who have hesitated thus far during the year see the few months before Christmas as an opportunity to belatedly get their moving plans underway. 

 “The frenetic pace of this year’s market may also have put some potential movers off, but there are signs of a return of some normality.”

Cory Askew, Head of Sales at Chestertons, noted that demand for property in the capital had visibly returned.

He said: “Since the easing of lockdown restrictions, London has been reclaiming its position as a lifestyle destination that appeals to a wide range of buyer demographics.” 

Highlighting the areas where demand had notably increased, Mr Askew added: “This is most evident in prime central London where buyer demand has really roared back to life, having lagged behind other parts of London this year.

“With an array of attractive mortgage offerings available, we expect London’s property market to remain buoyant for the remainder of the year. In particular demand are properties with outdoor space or a room that can be utilised as a home office.”



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