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Housing supply picks up in the UK with biggest monthly rise for two years

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Thu 05 Oct 2017

Housing supply picks up in the UK with biggest monthly rise for two years

The UK property market appears to be picking up with September seeing the highest number of new sellers listing their properties in a single month in the last two years.

Supply increased by 20.2% month on month nationwide and by 44.4% in London with the biggest increase in Oxford with a rise of 71% and the biggest fall in Luton at 48%.

The index from online estate agents HouseSimple suggests that sellers have now shaken off any Brexit concerns with 65.6% of towns and cities seeing an increase in the number of new properties taken on by estate agents.

The property supply index, which analyses new properties marketed in more than 100 major UK towns and cities, shows that the top five biggest supply risers in September were all in the south of the country.

After Oxford the next biggest rise in supply was a rise of 59.8% in Torquay, followed by 55.6% in Chichester, 49.2% in Salisbury, 44.4% in both London and Crawley, 39.7% in Shrewsbury, 37.5% in Cheltenham, 35.1% in Chelmsford and 34.4% in Colchester.

However, the biggest faller was also in the south, with new property supply in Luton down 48%, followed by a fall of 29.2% in West Bromwich, then Inverness down 28.6%, Darlington, Gillingham and Newquay all down 25%, Southport down 22.4%, Lichfield down 22.9%, Carlisle down 22.2% and Bootle down 21.1%.

In London every borough recorded a double digit rise in supply and there was a significant 108.5% rise in new listings in the borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Hammersmith and Fulham, which has seen some of biggest falls in house prices of any borough over the past few months, saw the next highest increase at 72.5%.

The data also shows that supply increased by 65% in Richmond upon Thames, by 63.9% in Westminster, by 63.5% in Hackney and by 63.3% in Islington.

‘A lack of property supply has been a major issue for some time now, so it was important that September wasn’t a complete washout. Although there was a big rise in new property listings last month, we’ll have to wait and see if this pick-up is nothing out of the ordinary after the summer lull in activity,’ said Alex Gosling, HouseSimple chief executive officer.

‘It feels like home sellers have had the post-Brexit, post-general election blues and maybe September is the first sign that they have shaken them off. Although we are still no clearer as to how a post-Brexit Britain might look, enough time has passed since Article 50 was triggered, and the country hasn’t plummeted into recession. Property prices have remained reassuringly stable and that has probably given sellers the confidence boost they needed to re-engage with the market,’ he added.