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Residential buy-to-Let

Figures reveal spike in UK property market activity in May

Author: Staff





Investors looking for opportunities in UK property will be encouraged by recent figures showing accelerating activity in the market.

Two separate reports highlighted an increase in property listings in May, suggesting an increase in supply for buyers hunting for their ideal purchase.

A ‘healthy boost’ in stock

May 2018 delivered a “healthy boost” in UK housing stock, with eight out of ten areas witnessing an increase in new listings, according to online estate agent HouseSimple.

The firm released a report showing that the overall increase in new properties listed for sale was 7.4 per cent compared to April.

More than 73,500 new homes were marketed by estate agents across the 100 major UK towns and cities featured in the supply index. This is the first time since the beginning of 2017 that this figure has exceeded 70,000.

The biggest increases in housing stock were recorded in two locations in the south-east: Chichester, where new property listings soared by 98.3 per cent from the previous month, and Oxford (58.2 per cent).

Sam Mitchell, HouseSimple chief executive officer, said market conditions were relatively subdued at the start of May, but improved significantly in the second half of the month.

“Buyers are showing real intent to purchase at the right price, especially with no sign of an interest rate rise on the horizon and some attractive mortgage deals on offer,” he added.

Exceeding expectations

Agency Express was similarly positive in its latest Property Activity Index for May 2018, which revealed month-on-month increases of 15.4 per cent in new listings for sale and 8.1 per cent in properties sold.

These figures were considerably stronger than those recorded in the same period of 2017.

The regional picture showed strong performance in the West Midlands, which registered 19.5 per cent growth in new listings and a 21.9 per cent increase in sales. The north-east also fared well, witnessing a 25 per cent rise in properties put up for sale.

Putting the figures into context, Stephen Watson, managing director of Agency Express, pointed out that May is typically defined by slower trends in the UK property market, so these results have exceeded expectations.

He added: “Moving into June, activity is thus far on trend and we remain optimistic for a buoyant summer.”

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