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House Price Reductions Hit 18-Month Low as Sales Increase

Hamptons’ latest market data reveals a significant decline in house price reductions and an uptick in sales across Great Britain, highlighting a shifting property market landscape.

Faster Sales in Southern Regions
The average home in Great Britain that went under offer in April had been on the market for 50 days, one day longer than the same time last year, reflecting the lingering effects of last year’s slowdown. Notably, the time to sell a home has decreased in the South of England, narrowing the gap with the North. “The time to sell gap has narrowed to eight days slower in the South of England than in the North, compared to a 16-day gap last year,” the report states. The South West saw the most significant reduction, with homes selling six days quicker than last year, followed by the South East and London.

Increase in Homes Receiving Quick Offers
One in twenty homes listed last month across Great Britain received an offer within the first week of marketing. The North East saw a substantial increase, with 13% of homes receiving an offer within the first week, up from 7% last year. The South of England also saw increased activity, with the East of England, South East, and South West all showing year-on-year improvements in quick offers.

Trend in Asking Price Achievements
In April, 27% of homes across England and Wales sold above their final asking price, consistent with last year. London and the South showed a rise, with 25% of homes selling above asking price, 2% higher than April 2023. Conversely, the Midlands and the North saw a 2% decrease in homes selling above the asking price. Sellers in the South achieved 98.9% of their final asking price on average, a 0.5% increase from last year. For the first time since 2016, London sellers are achieving the same proportion of their asking price as those across England and Wales, reversing a trend of greater discounts.

Aneisha Beveridge, Head of Research at Hamptons, commented, “Areas of the South that were hardest hit when mortgage rates peaked last year, have seen sales bounce back to above both 2023 and 2019 levels.” She noted that despite slightly increased mortgage rates, the number of homes going under offer is 10-20% above last year’s levels.

Overall, the data suggests a stabilizing market with reduced price cuts and increased sales, although a significant rebound in house prices remains unlikely due to continued high mortgage rates. Beveridge added, “2024 will see the number of people moving home recover much faster than prices.”