UK property market sees much needed supply boost at start of 2018

The residential property market has started 2018 with a boost as research shows that there was a 40% increase in new sellers across the UK in January.

London in particular saw a boost with a 79% rise in supply last month and in the borough of Hillingdon supply increased by 118.7%, according to research carried out by online estate agents House Simple.

The latest property supply index, which looks at the number of new properties listed by estate agents across 100 major UK towns and cities, shows a substantial rise in new sellers in January.

Some 10% of towns and cities saw new property listings more than double last month, some 48% saw new listings up at least 50% in January and only six saw supply fall compared with December.

Traditionally, the property market does experience a rush of homeowners marketing their properties in the New Year, but the index report shows that this year the spike has been more pronounced.

Every borough in London saw more new property listings compared to December, led by Hillingdon and then Bromley with a rise of 117.3%, Havering up 108.9%, Waltham Forest up 106.6%, Barnet also up 106.2% and Bexley up 100%.

Across the regions, the south saw the biggest gains in new sellers in January, with five out of the top 10 biggest risers in January. Solihull, in the West Midlands saw the biggest rise at 148.9%, followed by Southend on Sea up 141.5%, Salisbury up 127.3%, Rugby up 120.7% and High Wycombe up 117.5%.

‘The property market has enjoyed a much-needed New Year bounce in new supply. This boost does need to be put into context though, as new listings are still at very low levels. The market desperately needs a few more healthy months to fill the supply reservoir,’ said Sam Mitchell, House Simple chief executive officer.

‘We expect 2018 to be another challenging year for the UK housing market as the country’s exit from the European Union draws closer. House price growth is likely to be single digits this year at best. However, the property market has proven over the past 12 months that it is robust enough to handle the blustery economic headwinds coming its way,’ he pointed out.

‘For anyone thinking of selling their property over the next few months, they can be reassured there are committed buyers out there. But this is a price sensitive market. Buyers are negotiating harder and are happy to wait for the right property at the right price,’ he added.