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Estate agents report spike in buyer enquiries as stock concerns ease

Rightmove says valuation requests reached largest number so far this year last month, and were much higher than in 2021.

David Callaghan

rightmove

Enquiries from prospective vendors to agents reached the highest level so far this year, according to Rightmove.

The portal says the number of valuation requests in the week beginning 20 June was the most since January, and beat last year’s figure for the same period by 24%.

One day last month, 22 June, was the fourth busiest day ever for price enquiries by vendors, and the most active since May 2021. New properties coming onto the market in the last two weeks was 14% above last year’s total, Rightmove said.

The news will be very welcome to agents complaining of a shortage of stock to sell in recent months.

Data from Rightmove also shows that agents are responding to the spike in enquiries. The average time from a property listing to finding a buyer is at a near-record low of 32 days.

Agents responsive

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property science, (pictured) says: “In recent months, we have reported a slight easing of the market and the pace of price growth compared to the exceptional levels of last year, and now we are seeing signs of some of the pressure on stock easing too.

“However, there is still more demand than supply, and the market remains very active, so for those planning a move, it’s important that they give themselves the best chance of success by getting their property on the market if they have a home to sell.”

Valuations

Research by Rightmove covering 2,500 prospective sellers showed that they were much more interested in agents being responsive than in giving the highest valuation.

Prospective vendors value agents being responsive (87%), presenting their properties professionally in advertising (86%), and being knowledgeable about local markets (84%) more than having the lowest fees (32%) or providing the highest valuation (21%) for their home.

Bannister adds: “Our insights from prospective sellers show some delay putting their home on the market, because they think it’s more important to find a new property that they like first, or they are worried about finding a buyer for their current home before they’ve found their next one.

“Agents point out this puts them in a less strong position to move quickly in a busy market, where they are competing against other home-movers who may have already found a buyer for their home or don’t have a property to sell.”

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July 6, 2022

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