Property price discounts at lowest level for four years

The proportion of UK properties currently on the market for sale with a reduced asking price has fallen to its lowest level in four years according to property website Zoopla.co.uk.

Research from Zoopla shows that of all properties currently available for sale, only 27% have had their asking price reduced from their original level, down from 31% three months ago and significantly below 2011 when 40% of properties on the market were being discounted in order to attract a sale.   The size of the average price reduction has also fallen over the last three months with motivated sellers now offering average discounts of 6.25% off the original asking price (£20,782), down from 6.45% (£21,451) in November.

Wakefield tops the list of places with the highest proportion of price-reduced properties on the market today, with 42% of homes for sale there having been discounted from their original level. Barnsley (38%) and Rotherham (37%) come in second and third on the list of places with the highest level of motivated sellers.

The biggest discounts can be found in Newcastle upon Tyne, where the average asking price reduction currently stands at 8.9% (£19,425).   London comes top of the list of places with the lowest proportion of discounted properties on the market. Of all the homes currently for sale in the capital, only 15% have seen their asking price reduced from their original level. Edinburgh (20%) has the second lowest proportion of discounted properties with Coventry in third place currently (24%).

Lawrence Hall of Zoopla comments:

“The government’s Help to Buy scheme, increased availability of mortgages and confidence in the economy have all helped to invigorate the property market at the start of 2014. This has driven a rise in demand among buyers and helped reduce the pressure being felt by sellers to discount their properties – particularly in London, where competition for quality property remains fierce.

“While this is good news for sellers, buyers need to see more stock come onto the market over the coming months otherwise the recent trend of rising prices is likely to continue as spring takes hold and more buyers decide to search for property and create further competition.”

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