February Property Market Analysis
The ups and downs of property prices continue to fascinate many. After spectacular rises during the pandemic, and a temporary sense of panic when Liz Truss was in power, January shows how a more stable landscape has affected values. New data from Zoopla offers a great perspective.
The portal’s analysis reveals the average UK home is now worth 18% more than it was in March 2020 – that translates to £41,000 extra. It’s a reassuring figure, especially for those who have been worried about how the last 14 months may have affected their home’s worth. If you’re curious about the value of a property you own, book a no-obligation valuation with us to find out.
Number of sales and buyers is brisk
If you decide to sell after a valuation, you’ll be part of an increasingly positive property market. Zoopla’s other findings set the scene. It found the number of buyers house hunting has risen 10%, compared to the same point in time in 2023. Additionally, the portal’s latest House Price Index detailed a 17% increase in new sales agreed.
More properties coming to market
The uptick in activity was also reflected by Rightmove. Its latest report showed three vital markers of a positive property market had improved. Firstly, there was a 15% rise in new properties for sale coming to market in January.
Secondly, demand among buyers was also on the rise. This was 5% higher in January 2024, when compared to January 2023. Thirdly, the beginning of the year saw an increase in sales agreed – 20% higher than during the first week of 2023.
The uplift in buying and selling intent has already translated to property values. Rightmove found the UK’s average new seller asking price rose by 1.3% (+£4,571) between December 2023 and January 2024. This leaves the average asking price in the UK at £359,748.
When it comes to sold prices, the Nationwide’s January House Price Index documented a rise. Its figures show UK property values rose 0.7% month-on-month in January. For context, house prices remained flat in December.
So what is the UK’s current average house price? The Nationwide says it is £257,656. Zoopla’s figures suggest it is £264,400, while the Halifax put the figure at £287,105. If you average those out, it would be £269,120.
Mortgage rates continue to decrease
Where there are buyers, there are mortgages and January saw another round of cuts to mortgage rates. There’s now an increasing number of home loans with rates of less than 4%. There was also mortgage news from the Government.
It is reportedly mulling over the idea of introducing a range of 1% deposit mortgages to assist first-time-buyers. This would help those struggling to save for a deposit of a traditional size – usually 5% or 10%. We may see details of such mortgages revealed in the Spring Budget on 6th March.
Lending to landlords forecast to strengthen
When it comes to buy-let-mortgages, a change may also be on the cards. After questioning 300 mortgage brokers, Paragon Bank found 49% think there will be more buy-to-let mortgages written to portfolio landlords using a limited company over the coming year. Additionally, 45% of participants thought the same regarding private landlords.
The predictions among brokers are favourable to come true, if survey results published by Together are true. It found 34% of the buy-to-let landlords it questioned are planning to expand their portfolios in the next 12 months. The analysis also revealed a quarter are planning to refinance their properties in 2024 to support business objectives.
If you would like to know more about your local property market, please get in touch.
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