UK house asking prices see biggest monthly increase in over 20 years

Wednesday 23rd March | 1 minute read

The asking price of homes in the UK coming to market has risen to a record of £348,804. The 2.3% increase in February – up £7,785 –  was the biggest monthly jump in more than 20 years according to Rightmove.

The 9.5% increase in asking prices from last year is the biggest yearly rise in house prices since September 2014 and average asking prices have now risen by nearly £40,000 in the two years since the pandemic started, compared to just over £9,000 in the previous two years.

Why has there been such an increase? Analysis suggests the increased demand in London due to gradual return to workplaces is one of the larger factors. London has seen the highest annual rate of price growth since 2016, as Covid restrictions come to an end and people return to working in the city. The average asking price of a home in London has now reached £667,001. 

Plus "second steppers" - buyers looking to move on from their first houses in the search of more space - are driving the asking price increase. “A fear of missing out on one’s dream home is really driving market behaviour at the moment, as movers look to do all that they can to avoid the disappointment of being too slow to secure their ideal property,” said Rightmove's property expert Tim Bannister.

Both buyers and sellers fear missing out in the current competitive market as more potential buyers send enquiries to agents, with queries up 16% when compared to this time last year whilst property listings are up 11% during the same time period.

Competition for houses is fierce. With demand higher than current availability, many properties are selling above the asking price. However, sellers will be looking to capitalise on the increased house prices, and with March historically being the best time to sell, it is expected there will be a busy spring season ahead for both buyers and sellers.


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