THERE were 11 buyers chasing every property in the UK in January, with availability at its lowest level since last July.
According to the National Association of Estate Agents Propertymark, the low level of supply saw more than one in 20 properties sold for more than the original asking price.
The average number of prospective buyers registered per member branch in January was 425, a 10 per cent rise from December 2016 when estate agents registered 386 properties on average.
However there were only 38 properties for sale on average at each estate agent branch – the lowest level recorded since last July.
Mark Hayward, chief executive of NAEA Propertymark, said: “January saw a surge in buyers looking to kick off the new year – but Competition is rife with an average of 11 buyers chasing each property. The increase in the number of properties selling for more than asking price in January could be a result of heightened interest and the fact there is simply not enough housing to meet demand.
“When the Government issued their Housing White Paper at the start of February we stated how important it was for the industry to put forward robust solutions to really make a difference, and it’s vital that building more affordable housing is at the very top of their agenda.”
In January 30 per cent of sales were made to first time buyers – a slight decrease from December’s figure of 32 per cent. The number of sales agreed per branch increased from six in December to eight last month – returning to the same level seen in November.