Housing supply at eight-year high

Housing supply at eight-year high

Supply of homes for sale is 20% higher than this time last year, with £230bn worth of housing for sale, Zoopla has revealed.

As it stands agents have an average of 31 homes for sales, the highest number in eight years.

It’s likely more supply will keep a lid on house price rises, as UK house price inflation stands at -0.1% on average.

Richard Donnell, executive director at Zoopla, said: “The growth in the supply of homes for sale is evidence of renewed confidence amongst homeowners, some of whom delayed moving decisions in 2023.

“The quarterly rate of house price inflation has picked up in recent months as more sales are agreed and prices firm.

“The announcement of the election will slow the pace at which new sales are agreed while greater choice for buyers will keep house prices in check over 2024.

“It’s essential that those serious about moving in 2024 price their homes realistically if they want to achieve a sale.”

There’s currently a north-south divide in terms of house price growth, with house price falls in the south and modest rises in the north.

On a city level strongest house price growth is in Belfast (+3.6%), Burnley (+2.5%) and Bolton (2.4%), and the highest house price falls are in Ipswich (-3%), Hastings (-2.7%) and Norwich (-2.4%).

The rising supply has been driven by a rise in three- and four-bedroom homes for sale.

Sales agreed are 13% higher than this time last year, but are still being outstripped by rising supply.

The general election in early July is expected to modestly slow down activity until July 4th.

Tom Bill, head of UK residential research at Knight Frank, said: “Growing supply is one reason that UK house price growth this year will be limited to low single digits.

“However, the main obstacle for buyers is stubborn services inflation, which is keeping mortgage rates high.

“Asking prices therefore need to reflect the fact that buyers have more choice and tighter budgets.

“General elections don’t tend to impact mainstream property markets and if anyone is attempting to guess what happens next to house prices, I would suggest looking closely at the next inflation data rather than the manifestoes.”