Selling times for UK properties falling in most areas

The amount of time it takes to sell a house in regional areas of the UK is falling as properties have begun to sell faster, research suggests.

Selling can be a frustrating experience at the best of times, but especially so when properties are languishing on the market too long. Since the financial crisis, many regional markets have seemingly been stuck in first gear, but at long last, the time taken to sell a property outside of London and the South East is dropping.

The typical time on the market for unsold property across the UK has fallen to 102 days, eight days less than in May last year, according to data from

By way of contrast, in May 2009 when prices were severely under pressure, the typical time to sell a property stood at 184 days, some 80% longer than in the current climate.

Considerable regional differences still exist. London and the South East top the table with typical time on the market around 70 days and continuing to fall. At the other end of the spectrum, the typical property in the North East remains on the market for 198 days or six and a half months.

Unfortunately, this has risen by a further nine days, over the last 12 months which the firm says is a clear indication that the region’s property market is still crawling.

However, the now well established recovery in the London and South East markets is, to some extent, moving to other regions of England, Scotland and Wales.

The Yorkshire and Welsh property markets have experienced the largest falls in marketing times, with Yorkshire's time on market falling by a full 30 days since May 2012. Both the East and West Midlands have also experienced considerable reduction in the time to market property and average prices are now beginning to recover.

‘Whilst marketing times are notoriously seasonal, the time taken to sell property is an important indication of the real health of the local market. This vital signal provides estate agents, buyers and vendors alike an insight into the fluidity of local markets and their ability to drive transactions,’ said Doug Shephard, director of

‘The dynamic markets of London and the South East continue to enjoy the shortest selling times, but it is encouraging to note that other areas of the country are seeing the largest falls. One cannot underestimate the boost to vendor confidence that is gained by taking three to four weeks off the selling time. In turn, this puts more pressure on the seller to commit to the purchase of their next home, and creates a positive impact throughout the entire property chain,’ he added.