Average house price at record high

The new high is £8,218 higher than a previous record set in April


Housing market report

House-sellers' asking prices have jumped to a new record across England and Wales, with the average property on the market in June having a price tag of £294,351, Rightmove has reported.

The new high is £8,218 higher than a previous record set in April, and a surprise fall in the supply of homes coming on the market in recent weeks has added to the upward pressure on prices, the property website said.

Asking prices reached new records across southern England as well as the Midlands in June as the supply of properties for sale tightened further, increasing the imbalance between supply and demand from buyers.

The number of properties coming to market was down by 8.5% on the same period a year ago and the last month has also seen a 3.9% fall in the supply of new homes, the report said.

Experts had previously suggested that some potential sellers and buyers had been putting their plans on hold to await the outcome of the general election.

Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove, said that while there has been an upturn in buyer demand following the election, there has also been an "unanticipated" post-election fall in the supply of new properties.

Mr Shipside said: "Many potential sellers have so far failed to come to market.

"This has pushed up some of the asking prices of those properties that have been marketed, meaning that buyers are faced with paying a new average record price high for the more limited choice available."

The supply of top-end properties worth more than £2 million coming to market bucked the general trend. Rightmove said there was an 86% month-on-month leap in new listings of properties in this price bracket, as the general election outcome swept aside the possibility of a mansion tax.

Average asking prices reached a new record in June of £613,922 in London, £388,617 in the South East, £287,776 in the South West, £309,407 in the East of England, £188,962 in the East Midlands and £201,223 in the West Midlands.

Wales and the North East of England were the only areas in the study to see asking prices fall year on year. In Wales, average asking prices fell by 1.4% to reach £174,680 on average. In the North East, the average asking price fell by 0.3% to reach £144,210.

Mr Shipside said: "It all seems set up for an active second-half housing market in 2015 barring any external shocks to the economy."

But he said it remains to be seen whether buyers will be able to stretch their finances to meet the prices being demanded by sellers.

The report also quoted the views of estate agents.

Lulu Egerton, a partner at Strutt and Parker in Chelsea, said: "There is certainly a lot more energy, appetite and confidence out there. Transaction levels have risen slightly.

"One property that we had on for three months before the beginning of May, which had seen little traction, has now been agreed over the asking price with several bidders involved.

"The market does however remain price-sensitive. I think we are gearing up for a very busy autumn when we will see a particularly rapid trading environment, and prices will start to rise again."

Alex Bourne, director at Hanover West End, also in London, said: "We received inquiries from much more committed buyers and have generated several offers over the £2 million mark since the election."

Peter Woodthorpe, director of Readings in Leicester, said: "While we've had even more prospective buyers come into the market after the election, we haven't seen an increase on the supply side. The demand has been strong from people looking for all types of property, from flats to large detached houses."

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