Comment: Sellers told to be bold in the challenging summer market

PUBLISHED: 07:39 16 July 2019 | UPDATED: 07:56 16 July 2019

Rightmove's Miles Shipside said:

Rightmove's Miles Shipside said: "It will be those sellers who are bold enough to price aggressively who will attract buyers with the confidence to act rather than hesitate" during the second half of 2019. Picture: Shutterstock


The summer holidays are a known challenging time of year for the housing market, particularly where family homes are concerned.

As someone seeking this type of property, I'm braced for more stagnation over the coming weeks as sellers wait until everyone's back from their hols before putting their properties on the market.

And it's not like things aren't frustrating enough already: according to Rightmove's latest House Price Index, there's been a year-on-year fall of 7.8 per cent in the number of new properties coming to market, meaning fresh stock is much needed. The number of sales being agreed is also down 4.6 per cent on last year.

This doesn't mean estate agents are short on stock, however - the average of 53.3 properties per branch is the highest number since July 2015.

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The property portal is keen to look on the bright side, promising that this longer time to secure a buyer, coupled with higher property stocks, means we could be looking at "more of a buyers' market in the second half of 2019". We can but hope.

The situation they describe more than matches up with what I've seen locally, with a noticeable supply shortage - particularly among family homes - while other properties seem to hang around for ages.

According to Rightmove's Miles Shipside, we mustn't fret. He said the growing numbers of properties on agents' books combined with fewer properties coming up for sale is "evidence of a more challenging market, with more sellers competing to get their transaction over the line".

He added: "With activity and prices often weaker in the second half of the year, it will be those sellers who are bold enough to price aggressively who will attract buyers with the confidence to act rather than hesitate."

As someone desperately seeking a place to buy in a market woefully short on suitable stock, I'll be hoping my dream home's owner opts to heed Miles' advice.

Though after what's felt like years of ultimately completely pointless househunting, what I could really do with this summer is a holiday from Rightmove itself.

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