The asking prices of homes being listed for sale have stabilised in March and the housing market is showing cautious signs of recovery, following last year’s mini-Budget debacle and subsequent interest rate hikes, according to new figures from Rightmove.
The property search giant’s latest figures reveal average asking prices for newly listed homes have risen 3% over the past year, after experiencing a 0.8% increase in the past month alone. This means the typical asking price is up by £2,906 to £365,357 in the year to mid-March, although this is £5,800 below October’s peak.
According to Rightmove, in Yorkshire and the Humber, prices have increased by 4.5% year on year, with the average property now priced at £241,270. The company also said buyer demand is now 6% higher than the same period in 2019.
Patrick McCutcheon, head of residential at Dacre, Son & Hartley, which has 20 offices in West and North Yorkshire, said: “Rightmove’s data shows the UK’s housing market is on a more stable footing than many anticipated for this year and is reverting to the more normal activity levels that we last saw in 2019, prior to the pandemic.
“This month’s Budget also came at a good time for the market, with news that the UK will avoid a recession, as we head into the traditionally busy spring period.
“This coincides with all 20 of our offices preparing to launch healthy numbers of properties over the coming weeks, which will create more choice for buyers, because ultimately the chronic shortage of homes for sale has been the market’s biggest constraint over the past two years.”
Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property science, commented: “The beginning of the spring season sees stability and confidence continuing to return to the market as it recovers from the turbulence at the end of 2022. The pace of the market reached an unsustainable level in the last two years, and was on track to slow to a more normal level, though the speed of this slowdown to more normality was accelerated by the reaction to September’s mini-Budget.
“While higher mortgage rates and economic headwinds raise challenges, many potential home movers who were effectively side-lined in the frenetic bidding wars of the last two years will find that a slower-paced market gives them time to plan and secure their next move as we enter the traditionally busy spring-buying season.”