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Average UK property prices dropped by over £5,000 last month according to the latest figures released by Rightmove.
The reduction constitutes the largest November drop in average UK property prices since 2012.
Declines in average UK property prices were registered in all regions, with higher-value areas such as London and commuter towns in the South East of England falling the most.
Although it is not unusual for average UK property prices to fall at this time of year in the lead up to Christmas, Rightmove explained that this larger than usual drop has been compounded by a cooling market in the south as well as the upper price sectors, partly due to the ongoing political uncertainty surrounding Brexit.
The average UK property price fell by 1.7 per cent (£5.022) over the month and contributed to the first national year-on-year price fall since November 2011, with the price of newly-marketed property now 0.2 per cent cheaper than 12 months ago.
Higher-end, former hotspot towns are now among the biggest annual fallers with Rickmansworth (-7.1 per cent), Esher (-6.4 per cent) and Gerrards Cross (-6.0 per cent) now cold spots following price rises of nearly 40 per cent over the seven preceding years.
Rightmove director, Miles Shipside, commented: ‘New sellers and their agents are reacting to market forces and lowering their pricing aspirations by more and sooner than usual. Stretched buyer affordability and the cooling markets in the south and in upper price brackets have combined with the ongoing political uncertainty to change pricing optimism into pricing realism. This is a welcome effort by sellers to minimise the usual pre-Christmas market slowdown. Some new-to-the-market sellers and their agents have acted early to try to improve the buying mood and avoid the traditional ‘buyer humbug’ dislike of Christmas housing activity.
While many thought that the down-to-the-wire Brexit deal uncertainty would hold people back from buying, more buyers have actually jumped in. Some buyers see this pre-Christmas price lull as a gift to their negotiations. It proves that people need to get on with their lives and will continue to buy homes if the underlying economic fundamentals remain strong.’
Separate figures from Zoopla last month showed that nearly two-in-five of average UK property asking prices have dropped by more than £26,000.
Sellers have cut the price of 37.9 per cent of properties on the market, up from 32.4 per cent in April, property website Zoopla confirmed.