Vendors Urged to Cut Prices

Life has been ?squeezed out of the market?, and vendors should cut prices further to tempt buyers back, has warned.

Asking prices for the 70,000 properties on the Rightmove website are down 0.3% – just £600 ? this month. However, prices must fall a further 6%-8% to bring borrowing costs back to the levels they were before the market ?turned?, the property website said.

It sees the market stagnating, with the average time properties spend on the market up from 53 days in May to 81 days during December, and estate agents? stock levels have gradually increased this month to an average of 67 properties per branch from 49 properties in January.

Annual asking price inflation is also down this month, from 11.6% to 10.9%. Rightmove?s commercial director, Miles Shipside, expects more falls as the market continues to readjust and estate agents advise serious sellers to take positive action to attract reluctant buyers back.

However, although prices need to come down, Mr Shipside does not predict a crash, thanks to the sound economic environment and the likelihood that interest rates have reached their peak.

?Homeowners who want to sell need to be much more realistic with their asking prices if they want to persuade buyers back into the market. Even once the quieter holiday period is over, sellers will find themselves competing with a lot of other properties on the market. In any business, excess supply and low demand means one thing ? cut prices,? said Mr Shipside.