Average price of a newly marketed house prices jumps £5,279 in March – Rightmove

By Staff

Across the UK, the typical price on a home increased by 1.5%, pushing the average asking price to £368,118

The average price of a newly listed home jumped by more than £5,000 month-on-month in March, suggesting that “we now seem to be past the bottom of the market,” according to property website Rightmove.

Across the UK, the typical price on a home increased by 1.5% or £5,279, Rightmove reported. This increase pushed the average asking price to £368,118.

Rightmove noted that the month-on-month rise was higher than the usual 1% average seen in March. The average asking price is still sitting £4,776 below a peak seen in May 2023.

Both agreed sales and buyer demand are higher than this time last year, although the market remains sensitive to pricing, Rightmove said. Properties priced attractively are quickly being snapped up, but homes with over-optimistic prices are taking longer to find a buyer, it added.

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property science, said: “March is typically a strong month for asking price growth, as both buyer and seller activity levels rise and the spring selling season gets under way. However, the stronger-than-usual price growth this March indicates that new sellers are feeling much more confident, with some perhaps being overoptimistic, that there is enough buyer activity and affordability in their local market to achieve a higher price.”

“Despite the above-average price increases in this opening three months of the year, asking prices are still £4,776 below their peak in May 2023. For those who can afford to buy and have yet to take action to move this year, this may provide a window of opportunity to buy as we now seem to be past the bottom of the market.”

He continued: “While some sellers are still being overoptimistic with their pricing expectations, there are also more sellers who are aware of the need to be negotiable and realistic, with elevated interest rates compared to recent years still stretching affordability for many buyers.”

“Sellers are right to feel more confident and optimistic this year, but buyer affordability remains stretched and higher mortgage rates are an ongoing challenge. With the market still sensitive to pricing and external events, some caution and willingness to negotiate is advised for sellers who are keen to find a buyer in the spring market.”

Marc von Grundherr, who is the director at estate agent Benham and Reeves, said: “While mortgage affordability remains an issue, it certainly hasn’t dampened the appetite of London buyers and we’ve continued to see a high level of activity at all price thresholds, but particularly across the super-prime market. Buyers at the very top end of the ladder are acting with great confidence, with the higher cost of borrowing not presenting the same obstacle as the average homeowner.”

He added: “As a result, we’re seeing high demand for super-prime stock and many more buyers circling due to a more constrained supply of suitable properties in this sector.”

The news comes as property firm Hamptons shared that the growth in rental prices has slowed down in February. Last month, the average rent for homes being let out for the first time in Britain went up by 7.1% from last year. This is less than the 8.3% increase in January and way below the 12.0% high in August 2023.

This means that someone moving into a new place would pay about £87 more each month. That’s an extra £1,044 a year compared to if they had moved last February, according to Hamptons.

In the UK, the average monthly rent for a home just put up for rent was £1,317 in February. Aneisha Beveridge, who leads research at Hamptons, shared: “Lower mortgage rates have meant landlords needing to refinance in 2024 are seeing a smaller adjustment in their mortgage costs than those who remortgaged in 2023. This is slowly helping to balance mortgage investors’ books.”

The lettings index from Hamptons uses data from the Countrywide Group and looks at the rents people actually pay, not what landlords ask for.

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