The average price of a home will rise by 2% over the next year, with northern regions performing more strongly than those further south, according to predictions from the UK’s biggest property website. Rightmove said it expects to see asking prices rise by 2% in 2020 – and that the election result could pave the way for increased housing market activity this coming spring.
The rebound in the market follows a moribund 2019, in which the number of sales agreed fell 3% last year and the number of properties coming to market fell by 8%, said Rightmove.
The website’s data for the latest month – to mid-December 2019 – revealed that prices were still declining as the election took place. Rightmove said the average price fell by 0.9% to £300,025 in December, leaving the market just 0.8% ahead of this time last year.
But a re-acceleration next year, even to just 2% growth, will mean buyers having to pay £6,000 more for the average home. Rightmove director Miles Shipside welcomed the certainty produced by the election landslide. “The greater certainty afforded by a majority government gives an opportunity for a more active spring moving season, with some release of several years of pent-up demand.”
He added: “There will be regional variations. London is finally showing tentative signs of bottoming out, and we expect a more modest price rise of 1% in all of the southern regions where buyer affordability remains most stretched. “In contrast, the largest increases will be in the more northerly regions, repeating the pattern of 2019 with increases in the range of 2% to 4%.”
On Friday one super-rich European family bought a house in central London for £65m, saying their decision was a direct result of Boris Johnson’s Conservative party election victory.
The family instructed the luxury estate agent Beauchamp Estates to buy the property in an undisclosed “prime central London” location, as investors and the very wealthy celebrated the 80-seat majority.
Chestertons, an estate agent with offices in 30 upmarket locations around the capital, said a bounceback in London prices could be swift. Guy Gittins, the managing director of Chestertons, said: “We expect that the considerable pent-up buyer demand which has been waiting for Brexit clarity will now be released. Sellers will, in turn, be encouraged by the increase in demand and are likely to start putting their properties on the market in greater numbers, and the increase in sales could see prices bounce back quite quickly.
“We have already seen how quickly confidence can rebound, with the pound surging to its highest level since June last year and the FTSE 250 hitting record highs, and buyers should consider acting sooner rather than later, while prices are still at attractive levels compared to the last market peak.”
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