An early snapshot of activity in the housing market shows that more home-hunters than ever are searching for their next home. Visits to Rightmove over the first two weeks of the year were up 5% on the same time last year, meaning that on average there were over 4.5 million visits every day.
The overall market picture painted by our data scientists illustrates that the more northerly regions are faring better in terms of pricing power and willingness to move than those down south.
The average price of property coming to market is up by just 0.4% (+£1,207) this month, which is the lowest monthly rise seen at this time of year since January 2012.
Those numbers are largely influenced by London and the South East, however, since together they constitute 30% of all new-to-the market listings.
The capital has seen an average fall of 1.5% in new seller asking prices this month, while the adjacent South East region remains muted at only +0.2%.
Rightmove’s property expert Miles Shipside says: “Traditionally this is the time of year when more movers look at a wider choice of fresh property supply and kick-start the market, and this year’s buyers have the added spur of the slowest rate of new year price increases for five years.
“Sellers seem to recognise that they need to lower their price aspirations, and with an average of over 4.5 million visits to Rightmove each day many people appear to be contemplating a new-year move.
“Indeed, in 2018 the numbers of sales agreed by estate agents was down by only 3% on 2017, an indicator of resilience and holding up much better than many had forecast.”
The national average of properties coming to the market is broadly the same in the first two weeks of the year (-2.1%) compared to the same period a year ago. There is a 10.0% drop in London, while the largest rises are predominantly in the northern regions.