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New Listings Reach a Four-Year High for Housing Market

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    Zoopla Notes That Buyers and Seller Are Returning to Market

    While 2023 was marked with severe levels of declining stock in the property market, 2024 has gotten off to a more optimistic start.

    We are now seeing the highest stock levels in four years, according to Zoopla. These findings indicate that sellers are willing to take a chance on the market now that mortgages are more affordable and inflation has fallen to a more manageable level.

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      What Does the Current Housing Stock Level Look Like?

      Zoopla reports that the strong momentum in the property market, which began in the New Year, has extended into February. New property listings are now at their highest in four years.

      In the initial weeks of January, the portal noted a 14% annual increase in buyer demand, with a corresponding 16% rise in agreed sales. This positive trend has persisted into February, with current buyer demand surpassing last year’s figures by 11%.

      Buyer numbers have increased nationwide, with London leading the way, followed by the North East and North West regions, according to Zoopla. Agreed sales have grown across all UK regions, with more than a 10% increase in six areas, particularly in London, the South East, and Yorkshire and Humber.

      Zoopla also highlights that the supply of new homes for sale has risen by 10% compared to the previous year, reaching its highest point since 2020. The East of England, the South West, and the North East are experiencing the fastest pace of new home listings from sellers.

      In the other property market news, Chestertons has observed a 21% surge in house hunters making offers on properties in January, driven by reduced mortgage rates. Compared to last year’s month, the agency’s recent data reveals a 17% increase in properties listed for sale and a 7% rise in owners seeking market appraisals.

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      Will Activity Continue to Rise This Year?

      Head of research at Zoopla, Richard Donnell, said: “We expect rising activity to continue over the coming months. The market is better balanced between sellers and buyers than it has been for three years.

      “Despite reports that house prices are rising once again, it’s important sellers keep their feet on the ground. The positive news is that finding a buyer is going to be easier for most sellers, but more choice of homes for sale will mean greater room for negotiation.”

      According to Knight Frank, property prices may rise by 3% throughout 2024, while rental growth should fall to 6%. Both figures suggest that there will be an increase in activity over the next year. This will see tenant demand fall to healthier levels, while more stock available will push up prices of UK buy-to-let properties.

      Delve deeper into the UK property market with our 2024 buy-to-let area guides:

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      Dale Barham

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      Dale is a property content writer at RWinvest. Keeping a close eye on the UK property market, Dale helps our readers stay informed and up to date on the latest market news and statistics.