London micro-markets continue to buck the trend

This is a continuation of the trend seen over the last year, with asking prices in London now 6.1% higher than a year ago. The rest of the country recorded a combined fall of 1.7% over the same period.

Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove comments: “Depending on local market conditions, there are differing pressures on the direction of prices. The lack of property coming to market in the London area over the last year combined with buyer demand has helped to buoy new sellers’ asking prices in most locations. Prices will be receiving a further boost as estate agents compete to attract fresh stock for the year ahead.”

January often sees the beginning of a ‘spring bounce’ in the prices of properties coming to market, and there is again evidence of this in 2012, where the overall monthly period rise of 0.8% in new seller asking prices was boosted by a rise of 1.8% (£7,605) in the first week of 2012.

Shipside comments: “As we move into the more active spring market with a shortage of new supply, prices will rise where the local market or a particular estate agent is short of a type or style of stock. However, asking more for your property can only be successful if your target buying audience can raise the necessary funds. The market fragmentation caused by the credit crunch means that success in selling now requires a more careful and complex micro-market analysis, rather than a wishful price-punt to see what happens.”

There are still signs that the shortage of stock coming to market in the capital looks set to continue this year.

Rightmove recorded an average of 1,396 new properties a week coming to market this month, 12% down on the same period a year ago. Indeed the first week of 2012 has seen fewer new listings than in the first week of 2011, 2010 and 2009.

Shipside adds: “Sellers that own a property that offers buyers something really special in terms of value, potential, location or quality of finish will be very popular with both estate agents fighting for their business and buyers fighting for their property.”

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