2024 got off to a positive start in terms of the supply of properties potentially coming onto the market.
According to Rightmove, a record number of future sellers got in touch with an estate agent to get their home valued in January.
The property portal said that the number of people requesting a home valuation by an estate agent was 23 per cent higher in January than the previous record of January 2023.
It was also 27 per cent higher than the third highest month on record for valuation requests in July 2020, when the housing market had reopened during the pandemic.
One of the reasons sellers are feeling more confident is the more stable mortgage market, said Rightmove, which has remained calm at the beginning of the year.
Average mortgage rates have continued to move downwards, and the average five-year mortgage rate is now 4.64 per cent, compared to the peak of 6.11 per cent in July 2023.
The promising start to the year is also reflected in the number of properties that came onto the market in January, which was 13 per cent higher than last year.
Demand from buyers is up seven per cent over the same period, said Rightmove.
The firm’s property expert, Tim Bannister, said: “The early data suggests estate agents have had a busy start to 2024, with more market activity than at the start of last year.
“This activity we’re seeing is likely to be a combination of those movers who have recently decided to make 2024 their year for a new home, and some pent-up demand from those who took a step back last year to consider their options while the outlook for mortgage rates was more unclear.
“It’s early days but the first month of data is encouraging.”