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Average asking price hits £286,000

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The average asking price for a property in England and Wales has topped £286,000 for the first time, market data has shown.

Property portal Rightmove found the highest ever asking price of £286,133 this month and called for further action from government.

Each of the major political parties have made promises on housing but the topic has not yet been one of the key issues of the election campaign.

Since the last general election in May 2010 the average asking price in the South of England has risen by nearly £85,000, representing a 27.5% increase.

The increase in asking prices may be due to a drop in the number of sellers coming to market. The report highlighted a 4% decrease in new sellers compared to the same point last year.

Across the whole UK the average asking price grew 1.6% in the last month.

A breakdown of the figures showed first-time buyer properties commanded an asking price of £170,850 and homes for second steppers were valued at £237,352.

The typical asking price for a top of the range home was £519,500.

Miles Shipside, Rightmove director and housing market analysis, said: “Record high housing demand and an under-supply of homes have delivered a new all-time high in the price of property coming to market in the month before the election.

“The high cost of housing is a big concern for many home-hunters, so the contents of the respective party manifestos and well thought-out sustainable solutions to the lack of affordable housing supply will be high on many voters’ agendas too.

“While the annual rate of price increases may be dropping back, down from 5.4% last month to 4.7% this month, it’s of little comfort to buyers as even more modest increases stretch buyers’ finances into new territory with prices at record average highs. Furthermore, the rapid fall in general inflation means that the inflation adjusted rate of house price growth remains high.”

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