The Rightmove House Price Index was released this morning and gives a national picture of activity and house prices over the past few weeks. Here are a few key facts from the House Price Index we'd like to share with you:
- Average time to find a buyer is 63 days, so with Christmas 69 days away which sellers have the best odds of festive cheer?
- In spite of a more challenging environment, sales agreed numbers year-to-date are still 1.1% ahead of 2016
- New sellers ask higher prices in eight out of ten regions despite sales agreed numbers being down in nine of the ten this month compared to September 2016
- 1.1% (+£3,432) rise in average asking prices of 104,000 newly marketed properties compared to previous month
- Most likely to sell are second-stepper properties, with average time to find a buyer of 60 days, followed by first-time-buyer type properties at 62 days
- Top of the ladder properties take 76 days on average so less likely to sell before Christmas
- Northern sellers more likely to find a buyer with sales agreed numbers down by a modest 3.0% on September 2016, compared to the South where sales are faring worse, down by 7.9%
Mark Manning, Director of Manning Stainton in Leeds, Harrogate, Wetherby and Wakefield said: “The market across our region experienced a fairly traditional summer slowdown but interestingly managed to outperform our results from the same period one year ago. There has been a 10% increase in the volume of new seller enquiries over the last 3 months in contrast with the same period in 2016 and a more modest 2% increase in the number of new buyer registrations, but an increase nonetheless. All of this equates to a market which continues to offer good results and steady price growth as we head into the second busy period of 2017. And with a continuing appetite amongst mortgage providers to lend and a relative lack of stock in the market it’s difficult to see how this trend will change in the short term across our region.”
For lettings, the quarterly Rental Trends Tracker released earlier this month gives an insight into what we've seen in the rental market over the last quarter:
- National asking rents outside London dropped by 0.2% in the third quarter of 2017, the first drop recorded at this time of year
- Drop fuelled by the South East with rents down 2.3% on last quarter, and down annually for the first time, due to steadily increasing supply since last year’s second home stamp duty changes
- In London asking rents are at their lowest at this time of year since 2013, though a drop in supply and increased demand could mean rental prices will start to rise again soon
- Properties taking 8% longer to find a tenant outside London and 5% longer in London than in Q3 2016
Rightmove’s Head of Lettings Sam Mitchell explains: “Last year the supply of rental properties in London increased as much as 26% when investors rushed to buy ahead of the stamp duty changes, leading to cooling rents over the last 12 months in the capital. Now it appears that rental investors are starting to move their money away from London with a number of agents across London saying that investors are being replaced by first-time buyers. This is likely to constrict rental supply in the capital and lead to rents increasing again, so now would be a good time for prospective tenants to act, before this happens.”
This trend of investors looking to the north has been widely reported in a plethora of property investment articles recently, one being '5 places tipped to be buy-to-let property investment hotspots in 2017' on the BT lifestyle website which sited Manchester, Leeds, Hull, Stockport and Inverness as their top areas for investment.