House prices continue to increase across Britain

The average asking price in Great Britain has increased every month this year, rising by almost £11,500 since January 2013 and 5.12% up when compared to the same time last year, according to the latest data from Move with Us.

Figures from Move with Us, the residential property experts, have revealed five months of consecutive declines in the number of new property listings, which fell by 17.62% compared to this time last year. The reduction in the supply of new property listings has pushed up the average asking price as competition increases among buyers and new properties become a rarer commodity. Higher demand generated by the Help to Buy scheme and returning confidence in the sales market means that asking prices are increasing across almost every region in Great Britain.

Although the market tends to react with lengthened selling times when prices rise, we have only seen small increases in the number of days that it takes to sell a house across the country. The national average is now 111 days, compared to 121 days at the same time in 2012.

The South East was the stand out region of this quarter, showing no signs of slowing down after a positive second quarter. The average asking price in the region has risen steadily for the last ten months and at the end of September had reached a record high of £313,531, £17,733 more than in January 2013, the highest ever recorded figure.

Selling times in London were the quickest in Q3, with the average property taking 76 days to sell, 35 days faster than the national average and properties are selling eight days quicker than the same time last year.

Robin King, Director, Move with Us commented:

“Lower numbers of new property listings which increased demand from buyers together with the Help to Buy scheme have all contributed to the month on month increases in average asking prices seen across Great Britain in the third quarter of this year. With a limited supply of new properties coming on to the market and buyer confidence returning, sellers are currently benefiting from higher property prices caused by less competition in the market. At a regional level, the average asking price has increased in almost every region in the country in Q3 and buyers are seeing higher property prices.”

Regional highlights

Greater London
As new listings fell in Q3, London’s asking prices increased further as competition amongst sellers in the Capital reduced. The average asking price has risen by over £33,000 since January alone and by over 3% in the third quarter, reaching £392,366.

Properties in London took on average 76 days to sell at the end of Q3, the longest selling time seen in six months. Despite increasing selling times, properties in Greater London are still moving faster than any other region in Britain and 35 days faster than the national average.

South West
The South West experienced a reduction in the number of new listings in Q3 and sellers reacted by increasing asking prices. In September, the average asking price stood at £266,030, the highest asking price since 2009 and an increase of £12,506 since January. Average asking prices have increased by 4.46% since September 2012, indicating that seller confidence is high in the region.

The average time that it takes to sell a property in the region has increased steadily every month and now stands at 98 days. The average days to sell in the South West is over 8% faster than the same time last year, and is following the typical seasonal pattern expected in the run up to Christmas.

South East
The South East has seen one of the sharpest increases in the average asking price, rising by £17,733 since January to end the quarter at £313,531, the highest asking price ever recorded in the area.

Properties took longer to sell between May and September, with the average time to sell ending Q3 on 84 days. Despite increased selling times, properties in the South East are selling in some of the fastest timescales in the country, almost two weeks faster than the national average and eight days quicker than the same time last year.

East Anglia
Lower numbers of new properties in East Anglia have reduced the competition among sellers. This has pushed the average asking price to £258,429 which means that it has risen every month since December 2012. The positive trend seen in Q2 has continued in the last quarter, with house prices increasing by 4.1% in September when compared to the same month last year, indicating improved confidence among sellers.

The average number of days that it takes to sell a property in the region fluctuated in Q3, ending with an average of 91 days. Despite these small fluctuations, selling times in East Anglia were 20 days faster than the national average at the end of this quarter and 12 days faster when compared to the same time last year.

East Midlands
The average asking price has risen each month in Q3 finishing at £181,200, up 3.76% on the same time last year. Rising asking prices signify confidence among sellers, reflecting the more positive mood of the property market in recent months.

The average days to sell in the East Midlands region dropped by 30 days in May and despite it increasing by a few days in Q3, it has remained low, with properties selling faster than the national average at 110 days – an encouraging sign for the region.

West Midlands
The average asking price in the West Midlands has risen monthly in 2013 and now stands at £194,842 and is up 3.77% on September 2012. Asking prices have increased by £6,315 since January alone indicating improved confidence amongst sellers.

Average selling times dropped significantly by 28 days in May and then increased gradually by 11 days over four months, reaching 112 days in September. With a reduced number of new properties coming to the market in September, we would have expected the average days to sell to decrease in reaction to this, however in this case it’s more indicative of a market that’s re-balancing after a sharp fall in selling times.

Yorkshire & Humber
Despite a notable decrease in the number of new listings, the average asking price in Yorkshire & Humber flat-lined throughout Q3, changing by a nominal £74 to finish Q3 at £169,495. The region was one of only a few in the country to move against the national trend of a steadily increasing asking price in the face of reduced numbers of new listings.

The time taken to sell a property in Yorkshire and Humber decreased by 39 days between April and July to 124 days. Whilst this increased in August and September by nine days, the market is expected to find a natural balance after the significant decrease in selling times seen earlier in the year. Despite lengthening selling times, properties in Yorkshire and Humber sold on average 21 days faster in Q3 than the same time last year.

North West
The average asking price in the North West went against the national trend and almost flat-lined between May and August, altering by a nominal £114. Although September saw an upturn in the average asking price of over £500 to £173,520, this is likely to have been caused by a lack of new properties coming to the market pushing prices up as competition reduced. Minimal movements in price are also apparent in an annual comparison, increasing by only 0.37% in September 2013 when compared to the same time last year.

Although the average time to sell a property dropped by 35 days between April and July to 130 days, increases in selling times were reported throughout Q3, ending on 135 days. This indicates that the market in the North West is naturally finding a balance.

North East
The North East is one of the only regions to deviate from the national trend in regards to the average asking price. Instead of increasing month on month throughout the quarter in line with the rest of the country, the average asking price dipped in August before recovering marginally in September. While there is no notable increase in the average asking price in September, despite a reduced number of new properties on the market prices ended Q3 at £153,178, a small uplift of 0.19% on the end of the previous quarter and 0.54% higher than at the same time last year.

The average selling time in this region is the slowest in the country at 161 days, 50 days less than the national average.

*Figures are derived from The Move with Us Residential Market Review Q3 2013 which is produced in conjunction with Home.co.uk. The Move with Us Residential Market Review is based on a monthly analysis of more than 750,000 on market property instructions advertised across 11 regions in Britain. This data represents the majority of property for sale on the open market in Britain at any given time and it is broken down into House Price Index (HPI) regions.