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Why asking prices of property have fallen this month

The following is an excerpt from a November 2020 Rightmove news article:

The asking prices of property coming on to Rightmove increased in our last two monthly reports, but this month they’ve seen a dip of around £1,500.

Is this something for sellers to worry about? We don’t think so, as there are a few reasons for the slight drop.

Firstly, the stamp duty holiday on homes up to £500,000 is due to end on 31st March, and so sellers putting their property up for sale now are perhaps pricing a bit more realistically so that they have a better chance of a quick sale.

Secondly, asking prices usually drop at this time of year, and this month’s drop is actually lower than we’ve seen over the past few years.

The good news if you’re a new seller is that buyer demand is staying strong despite the second national lockdown in England. We saw an initial, temporary dip after the new restrictions were first announced, but demand was still up by 28% on the same days last year during the three days between the announcement and the lockdown.

The first six days of lockdown saw demand jump back up to being 49% higher than this time last year, as the market is still open and agents can still operate.

The temporary stamp duty savings that can be made vary a lot depending on the price of the property you’re buying.

We had a look and found that demand and activity compared with October last year are strongest in the price bands and regions where buyers are set to make the biggest stamp duty savings.

For example, the number of sales being agreed for properties priced between £100,000 and £200,000 is up by only 16% on this time last year.

Whereas the number of sales being agreed in the £400,000 to £500,000 price band has more than doubled (+106%).

In terms of how quickly homes are finding a buyer, the national average is now at a record low of 49 days.

However, homes priced between £400,000 and £500,000 have seen a big drop of 23 days to secure a buyer, compared to the £100,000 to £200,000 band seeing a drop of just eight days.

Regionally, the south is performing best relative to last year for the number of sales being agreed, up by 72% in the East of England, and up by 69% in the South East.

But we now estimate that there are around 650,000 sales going through, which is up by a massive 67% on the same time in 2019, and we know there are delays in the process so communication is key for people trying to get their sale over the line.

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