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Mainstream property sales market ‘holding steady’ but stock taking longer to sell

Brexit effect is only affecting upper end of market in London and the South but could spread further north, predicts Rightmove.

Nigel Lewis

Rightmove says the Brexit-influenced slowdown is most pronounced within the upper end of the housing market but that the mainstream lower and middle markets remain ‘robust’.

The claim is made within its most recent monthly house index for July within which it predicts an increasingly ‘buyers’ market over the next six months.

Rightmove says prices have dipped by 0.2% during July year-on-year, ending a six-month run of rising asking prices recorded by the portal (see above).

It says fewer properties are coming on to the market and that sales agreed are beginning to slow down year-on-year.

The portal also says  agents’ branches are beginning to fill up with unsold property and that time to sell has already increased to an average of 62 days, the highest for six years.

Price aggressively

“With activity and prices often weaker in the second half of the year, it will be those sellers who are bold enough to price aggressively who will attract buyers with the confidence to act rather than hesitate,” says Rightmove’s housing analyst Miles Shipside.

“It would appear to be sellers in the upper end of the market who need to be boldest on pricing, as data shows that the middle and lower sectors are holding up better.”

Lucian Cook, head of residential research at Savills, says the prolonged slowdown in the upper price bracket of the housing market which is largely found in London and the South East is showing signs of spreading north.

“Since the Brexit vote, the market has become driven by sentiment far more than the traditional economic drivers of affordability,” he says.

Read more about Righmove.

 

July 15, 2019

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