Housing asking prices reach record high
Asking prices for houses reached a record high of £313,655 this month, on average. According to the latest figures from Rightmove, April saw a 1.1 per cent increase in asking prices compared to the previous month, showing positive growth.
Month-on-month, asking prices rose by £3,547 on average, take them well above the previous high point of £310,471 that was seen in June 2016. Over the year, house prices have increased by 2.2 per cent, which is the slowest annual increase rate seen since April 2013 but is still moving in the right direction.
Despite these strong rises in asking prices, more houses are being sold compared to any point prior to the financial crisis, according to Rightmove. More first-time buyers are joining the market, with activity in this sector driving asking prices up by around 6.5 per cent, the figures show.
Director and housing market analyst at Rightmove Miles Shipside said that the recent figures show signs of a "strong spring market". However, it is unclear what effect the snap election in June will have on the housing market.
In terms of regions, the East of England has seen the most positive growth in terms of housing prices, with the past year seeing increases of 5.3 per cent, meaning they now stand at £331,780, on average.
Just two areas of the UK have seen asking prices fall, with the North East recording a 0.7 per cent decline to £151,459. The other area where prices fell was London, which saw them drop by 1.5 per cent to land at an average of £646,200.
Mr Shipside said: “Strong buyer activity this month has led to ten per cent higher numbers of sales agreed than in the same period in 2016. This large year-on-year disparity should be viewed cautiously as the comparable timespan in 2016 saw a drop in buy-to-let activity with the additional second home stamp duty. However, they are also up by 3.8 per cent when compared to 2015."