Date Published 21 April 2009
The latest survey from online portal Rightmove has revealed that sellers who are putting their homes on the market this month are raising the average asking price by 1.8 per cent - the biggest rise in more than a year - and this, coupled with a smaller annual decline, has given new hope that the UK market is recovering...
The third consecutive rise in asking prices this month - taking average prices up by almost £4,000 to £222,077, is hopefully heralding a new dawn for the UK property market.
The rise in asking prices this month is the biggest rise in 14 months and, although prices did still drop in April, it was the smallest decline since January and well down from the nine per cent fall last month.
There was also an increase in the number of new sellers tempted to market their homes in the last month, up 13 per cent from March to 22,260.
Time on market for properties has also fallen from 81 to 77 days, which is another good indicator that this may be more than just a seasonal bump and could be the start of a market recovery.
The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) also reported that the number of loans for home purchases jumped by four per cent in February compared to January. 24,300 mortgages worth £3.1 billion were completed by banks and building societies during the month, up from 23,400 in January.
The British Bankers` Association (BBA) said mortgage approvals increased for the third month in a row in February, up to 28,179 from 24,278 in January and way above November`s record low of 17,878.
However, Londoners still had to endure their homes falling by an average of 3.2 per cent - the only region to show a decline.
Research from property website Globrix showed that a small number of towns across Britain proved to be surprisingly resilient against the housing slump.
Cheltenham, Guildford and Sevenoaks have all seen average property prices fall less than two per cent since September last year, with prices in Cheltenham prices dropping by just 0.2 per cent to £219,999 in that period.
Rightmove`s Commercial Director, Miles Shipside said, "It looks like we are now bumping along the bottom of the trough.
"But, for there to be any real sense of optimism that we`re on a sustainable road to recovery, the availability of mortgage finance needs to improve significantly.
"Thankfully mortgage lenders are finally starting to release more funds to finance new house purchases.
"Some sellers are doing deals at prices that have adjusted to the new reality, though there also remain some real property black spots of overpriced supply outstripping recession-dimmed demand," added Mr Shipside.
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