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Lowest February increase in London prices since 2009

Alex Johnson

aa9d70c0830df31a878e367e78b2e2c491d41d65 300x247 Lowest February increase in London prices since 2009Compared to this time last year, property coming onto the property market in the capital is 8.4% or £37,638 more expensive, according to figures released today by Rightmove. The new record in London is £486,890, compared to the previous high of £483,709 in November 2012.

However, despite this rise the quarterly increase in asking prices is the lowest since February 2009 as the current average asking price is 0.7% (or £3,181) higher than it was three months ago. In the UK overall, Rightmove estimate the new seller average asking price is nearly £236,000, the highest in February since 2008.

Miles Shipside, director and housing market analyst at Rightmove, said: “London buyers searching for this month’s fresh to market stock will face the most expensive average asking prices ever seen in the capital. It will perhaps come as little comfort that this is the most conservative monthly increase recorded in the month of February since 2009.

“While London has been the out-perform market of the UK and the first to recover from the credit-crunch, there is a barrier to what people can afford to pay and, indeed, are prepared to pay. It remains to be seen whether sellers can achieve their record new price aspirations, which will require buyers to find the extra money and justify to themselves the higher prices being asked.”

Around London, prices in Kensington and Chelsea (+1.7%), Westminster (+3.5%) and Hammersmith and Fulham (+4.5%) continue to outperform the rest of the city, but this month also sees Islington (+4.6%), Merton (+4.4%), Hackney (+3.7%) and Croydon (+3.7%) in the top five risers.

“With sellers having a real upper-hand in pricing power in the higher priced and most sought after locations,” said Shipshide, “some buyer demand will ebb away from the most fashionable hotspots and flow into other boroughs. Buyers in the capital have a great track record of looking elsewhere to seek out new areas offering greater value and potential.”

The Rightmove research also suggests that in the UK:
* Seven in ten who intend to sell in 2013 are over 45
* Half of those planning to buy in 2013 will do so for at least the third time
* ‘Downsizing’ is the number one reason for selling in nine out of 10 regions in the UK

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