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Asking prices are up in New Year bounce

Christina Hoghton
Written By:
Christina Hoghton

The average UK asking price has now risen to £362,438

After two months of falls, average new seller asking prices rose by 0.9% (+£3,301) in January, said Rightmove.

This is the biggest increase at this time of year since 2020, as New Year sellers test the market, according to the property portal.

And it has taken the average UK asking price up to £362,438.

However, Rightmove also admitted that average asking prices are still £8,720 lower than their peak in October 2022.

Demand up

Rightmove noted that it is early days in 2023, but found some ‘signs of positivity’ in the first few weeks of the year.

Buyer demand is up by 4% compared with the same period in the last “normal” pre-pandemic market of 2019, and 55% compared with the two weeks before Christmas.

However, the number of enquirers is down by a third compared to the buoyant market of this time last

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s Director of Property Science, said: “The seasonal increase in new seller asking prices this January from December is particularly encouraging for movers who are looking for the reassurance of familiar trends and a calmer, more measured market after the rapidly changing and at times chaotic economic climate of the final few months of last year.

“However, while average asking prices did rise in January, they are still £8,720 less than their peak in October. The early-bird sellers who are already on the market and have priced correctly are likely to reap the benefits of the bounce in buyer activity, while over-valuing sellers may get caught out as property stock builds over the next few weeks and months, and they experience more competition from other better-priced sellers in their area.

“It will be important for the vast majority of sellers to remember that a drop in your asking price is likely not an actual loss compared with what you paid for it, only a failure to live up to aspirations. Listening to your estate agent’s advice about your hyper-local market and pricing right the first time can avoid a stale sale and the need for even greater reductions later.”