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July Market Report. Local property news for you...

Price trends have proved more resilient than most expected during the first half of the year, with average asking prices now 2.6% higher than in January.

However, the average price of property coming to market drops by 0.2% (-£905) in June to £371,907, marginally below the 0% norm for this time of year. Buyer demand remains resilient, being 3% higher than at this time in 2019.

“The interest-rate brakes being applied more strongly to slow the economy are now beginning to bite in the housing market. While prices and sales bounced back this year much more strongly than most expected, the unexpectedly stubborn inflation figures and the surprise of further mortgage rate rises when many felt that they had stabilised, have contributed to the fall in prices and the number of sales agreed. First-time buyers, trader-uppers, and downsizers with higher deposits and lower mortgage requirements appear to be still keenly searching the market, not wanting to miss out on the right property that is not over-priced and that they can still afford.” Tim Bannister Rightmove’s Director of Property Science

 

Prices

Month-on-month property prices remain consistent, however, both the Nationwide and Halifax report average prices in June are lower than this time a year ago. Prices remain significantly higher than at the start of 2021. On average offers are being accepted 3.8% below the initial asking price, although 42% of sellers accepted offers that are more than 5% below in June, the highest level since 2018 (Zoopla/Hometrack).

Kim Kinnaird, Director, of Halifax Mortgages, said - The average UK house price fell slightly in June, down by around £300 compared to May (-0.1%) with a typical property now costing £285,932. This was the third consecutive monthly fall, albeit it was a modest one. The annual drop of -2.6% (-£7,500) is the largest year-on-year decrease since June 2011. With very little movement in house prices over recent months, this rate of decline largely reflects the impact of historically high house prices last summer – annual growth peaked at +12.5% in June 2022 – supported by the temporary Stamp Duty cut.

To some extent, the annual growth figure also masks the fluctuations we’ve seen in the market over the past 12 months. Average house prices are actually up by +1.5% (£4,000) so far this year, with most of that growth coming in the first quarter, following the sharp fall in prices we saw at the end of last year in the aftermath of the mini-budget.

Bristol overview

Over the last 12 months, the average sales price in Bristol was £373,112. The highest value recorded by the Land Registry over the past 12 months was £2,950,000 for a flat and £3,500,000 for a house.

33% of sales in the past 12 months were flats, achieving an average sales price of £281,102. Houses achieved an average price of £427,631.

Demand

While the number of mortgages approved in May was higher than in April, the level of lending is lower than a year ago according to the latest data from the Bank of England. So far this year there have been 32% fewer loans approved compared to last year.

70% of buyers canvassed in April were confident they would purchase a property within the next three months, and just 7% stated they were concerned about securing a mortgage to fund the purchase (OnTheMarket). 

Rightmove says - The smaller home, two bedrooms, and fewer market sector has been less impacted, with June’s sales agreed figure 9% below 2019’s level. This typical first-time buyer sector has held up most strongly throughout the first half of the year, highlighting an ongoing determination from many first-time buyers to navigate the unsettled mortgage market and get onto the ladder, particularly with rents at record levels. It is also an indication of some people deciding to retire early and downsize to a smaller property, perhaps to release some equity from their home for lifestyle or early retirement, or to gift a deposit to family first-time buyers.

Lettings and Investments 

A monthly rise of 1.3% took the average rent in the UK to £1,229 in June, a 10.4% year-on-year increase (Homelet). 75% of mortgaged buy-to-let properties have a Loan-to-Value of less than 60%, one in three less than 50% according to research by Savills. Only if landlords were leveraged at 80% or more have current profits moved to negative territory.
Over the last 12 months, the average rent achieved for homes let in Bristol was £1,266 per month. This is a +10% change on the previous 12-month period.

69% of homes let in the past 12 months were flats, achieving an average rental value of £1,200 per month. Houses achieved an average rent of £1,432 per month. 28% of renters are aged between 25 and 29.

Finally, if you are (understandably) confused by some of the mixed market reporting, not least by some of the more sensational news reporting each month, click here for some independent insight into how House Price Indexes are compiled.

Sources: Rightmove, Zoopla, On the Market, Dataloft, Land Registry, National House Price Index, DLUHC

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