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Playing House

30.07.21

The tapering of the stamp duty deadline seems to have had little effect on the levels of demand currently being seen in the property market. Rightmove reports that they have seen their busiest first half of a year ever recorded, with buyer demand pushing the average price of property coming to market to a new record high for the fourth consecutive month, and £21,389 higher in just six months.

According to data released this morning by the portal, the new all-time high of £338,447 is due to a monthly rise of 0.7% (+£2,374). This is the largest monthly rise at this time of year since July 2007. Rightmove analysis has identified a shortfall of 225,000 homes for sale which, if available, would have helped to maintain a more normal level of property stock for sale and would have helped stabilise prices.

This stark shortfall, along with frenzied buyer activity, is fuelling record high prices and leading to record lows in available stock for sale. With high activity levels continuing despite the June stamp duty deadline now passing, there is an urgent need for these low stocks of property for sale to be rebuilt in order for price stability to return.

The net result of this major imbalance between supply and demand is that the average number of available properties for sale per estate agency branch is at a new record low of 16 properties, compared with the previous low before 2021 of 25 properties and a longer-term average for this time of year of 31.

The boom in sales demand and consequent greatest ever imbalance with supply have been most notable in the more expensive sectors of the market. Rightmove’s “top of the ladder“ sector mainly includes homes that are detached with four bedrooms or more. These have seen a surge of 39% in the number of sales being agreed, and a drop of 15% in the number coming to market when compared to the first six months of 2019. This massive swing has seen average prices for this sector up by 6.7% in the last six months.

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