Business

Hopes build for spring revival in UK housing market

Hopes are on the rise within the real estate sector, with indicators suggesting a potential spring revival in the housing market.

Both buyers and sellers are exhibiting increased confidence, reflected in a surge in asking prices, according to data from leading property platforms Rightmove and OnTheMarket.

The average asking price for new properties entering the market has experienced a notable uptick, climbing by 1.5 per cent to £368,118 compared to the previous month, as reported by Rightmove. This rise exceeds the typical March increase, marking the largest spike recorded by Rightmove since May of the previous year.

Tim Bannister, head of property data at Rightmove, attributes this robust price growth to heightened seller confidence, potentially driven by an optimistic outlook on buyer activity and affordability in their local markets.

OnTheMarket’s monthly report echoes this sentiment, revealing that 65 per cent of active buyers are confident in their ability to make a purchase within the next three months. Sellers are also displaying increased optimism, with 60 per cent anticipating a sale within the same timeframe.

After experiencing fluctuations in recent years, including a pandemic-induced surge followed by a subsequent downturn, the housing market is showing signs of resurgence. Factors such as reduced mortgage rates and renewed buyer interest have contributed to this momentum.

Developers have witnessed an uptick in sales, while estate agents report an increase in new buyer inquiries and a stabilization of prices. The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) survey confirms these trends, with the majority of estate agents anticipating increased sales in the coming year.

Despite the positive outlook, caution remains, particularly regarding mortgage affordability. While the housing market has shown resilience, fluctuations in mortgage rates underscore the potential for shifts in market dynamics.

Nevertheless, industry experts view the current market landscape as far more optimistic compared to previous months, signaling a potential return to normalcy after a period of exceptional circumstances. As the market enters its traditionally busy spring season, stakeholders remain cautiously optimistic about the trajectory of the housing sector.

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Hopes build for spring revival in UK housing market