Property prices rose by 4.1% in 2009, and another spike in asking prices of 1.2% in January is a positive sign which would-be sellers should heed if they want to sell before the General Election later this spring, according to the latest report from Rightmove.

Although further research in its own consumer confidence survey found that 70% of home-movers don’t believe the election will affect their plans although this may change as the year goes on.

Miles Shipside, commercial director of Rightmove, said: ‘The rise in asking prices is an early indicator that new sellers in 2010 have the confidence to try for a higher price, as the index was lined up for a fall until the turn of the year. We were expecting a drop of about 1% but the optimism of January sellers turned this around.’

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The website maintains that there are still favourable circumstances which appear to currently be overriding long term concerns about later in the year. In particular, for those who have held off from selling the early spring may be the best opportunity to take advantage of such benign conditions.

Mr Shipside added that supply is at an all time low: ‘We estimate that we are now seeing the lowest number of properties on the market this century. At present the limited number of sellers is being outstripped by buyer demand but we predict there will be more forced selling later in the year.’

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