In a report issued today, property website Rightmove said that the average price of a UK property rose by 2.6% last month, a marked improvement on the 0.1% rise of the previous month. The average price of a UK property for April 2010 is £235,512 and there has been a steep rise in the number of new properties coming on to the market. The removal of stamp duty on properties bought for less than £250,000 for first time buyers, which was introduced in last month’s budget, has also had an impact; Rightmove noted a 35% rise in the viewing of its property pages over the Easter break.
The good news comes with a word of warning from Rightmove’s commercial director, Miles Shipside who said: “with weather disruptions out of the way, more sellers are coming to market and they appear to be ignoring the uncertainties facing potential buyers. Prices are up, but so is choice, and the two are not happy bedfellows in the longer term. This year more than ever the traditional spring seller window is a price-sensitive one. If asking prices continue to rise, all but the most popular locations are building themselves up for some of the gains to be lost later in the year.”
In the same report, we hear that sellers are asking 6.0 percent more for their homes than a year ago, up from 5.3 percent in March. During 2008 house prices dropped up to 20% of their value, although almost 50% of these losses were recouped in the second half of 2009, helped by record low official interest rates and tight supply.