The time between listing a property and a sale is growing increasingly longer, according to property platform Zoopla, as house prices hit yet another record high.
In London, the average time it takes for a three-bed house to be whisked off the market has jumped from 17 days in March to 21 days in April. While outside of the capital, this has climbed from 16 days to 18 days.
It follows a pandemic-induced property frenzy, which peaked in July last year, amid the stamp duty holiday and a race for space.
The average price of a home now has now exceeded £250,000, for the first time since Zoopla began its House Price Index in 2004.
While demand continues to outpace supply, the time it takes for properties to be bought is expected to grow to a pre-pandemic average of 50 days, as rising interest rates push the cost of repaying a new mortgage higher by £852 a year since the start of the pandemic.
Falling buyer demand “punctured by changing sentiment around the cost of living and personal finances” will weigh on listings for much of the year, head of research at Zoopla, Gráinne Gilmore, explained.
“Another signal that the market is starting to soften is the number of properties where asking prices are being cut by more than five per cent,” said Gilmore, adding that “Some one in twenty properties have been re-priced this month, with the average new asking prices some nine per cent below the original.”
Though Vincent Dennington, director at Oxford Street-based estate agents John D Wood & Co., noted that a market slowdown may be a sign of property prices rebalancing from their bloated heights.
“This may also be a sign that properties have been initially overpriced and are not achieving any interest from potential buyers; therefore needing to be adjusted correctly to ensure a reduction generates new interest and ultimately offers,” he said.
“Currently, the market remains buoyant enough that should a property come to market competitively priced, it is likely to create a multi-bid scenario, resulting in final offers going over the guide price.”