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Asking prices in the UK fall

The average asking price of property coming on to the market has dropped by 0.9%, or £2,758, this month, according to Rightmove's latest house price index.

This month’s asking price decline is very much in line with the average for this time of year, which has been -1.2% over the seven years since 2010, data from the property portal shows, although it is worth noting that the market faces some well-documented headwinds.

“Sellers in the counties performing below par are having to ask for lower prices in order to sharpen up the appeal of their properties,” said Miles Shipside, Rightmove housing market analyst.

“Wherever sellers happen to be, they must not forget that buyer affordability has become increasingly stretched, and in this environment if you ask too much at the outset you are likely to lessen the chances of a successful sale,” he added.

On an annual basis, property prices increased by 3.1%, and yet despite cooler market conditions, there are still some price hotspots bucking the slowing trend, with areas in central England outperforming the rest of the country.

The top eight county hotspots, with price increases more than double the national average when compared to a year ago, are all in the middle band of the country.

They are Leicestershire (+6.9%), West Midlands (+6.9%), Worcestershire (+7.%), Bedfordshire (+7%), Nottinghamshire (+7.1%), Norfolk (+7.4%), Derbyshire (+7.9%) and Northamptonshire (+9.1%).

Shipside continued: “The top three price hotspots in the country, leading the mini-boom across the middle of England, are the counties of Norfolk, Derbyshire and Northamptonshire.

“Norfolk in third place has a popular holiday and retirement homes market which is perhaps providing better value for those still active in this sector than parts of the south coast, plus its county town is the fast-growing Norwich.

“Derbyshire in second position does well in the affordability stakes, being the cheapest of the top three and third cheapest out of the top eight with average prices around £200,000.

“The country’s top hotspot is Northamptonshire, aided by its commutability to London and affordability compared to counties closer to the capital.”

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