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Homeowners slash asking prices in run up to Christmas

3rd November 2010

  • Number of 'discounted' properties for sale has increased by 13% over last 3 months
  • A further £500m has been slashed off UK asking prices since August of this year
  • Average reduction of 6.1% from initial asking price, 8% on properties over £1 million
  • Swindon has the highest percentage of 'reduced' properties on market
  • Manchester has the highest average discount on properties for sale

New research out today from leading property search website Zoopla.co.uk shows that the number of properties for sale in the UK that have had their asking price reduced at least once since coming to the market has climbed by more than 13% over the past three months, up from 32.2% in August to 36.4% today.

The figures also show that the total value of the house price discounts has risen by almost £500 million over the last three months as owners start to get both more realistic and desperate to sell. For those properties that have been reduced in price, the average discount currently stands at 6.1% (£15,879) of the original asking price, according to Zoopla.co.uk, which provides a unique feature on its website allowing users to hunt for bargains by sorting properties by how much the price has been reduced by.

Towns in the West and the Midlands are seeing the highest number of asking price reductions, with Swindon topping the list where half (49.5%) of all properties currently on the market for sale have been discounted by the seller from the original price. Norwich is in second place with 46.8% of properties having been reduced in price, followed closely by Bournemouth at 45.9%.

However, it is in the North that dominates the list of places with the highest average asking price reductions. The largest discounts are currently to be found in Manchester where price reductions average 7.15%, followed by Newcastle (7.13%) and Milton Keynes (7.04%). At the other end of the scale, the lowest asking price movements are in the South, with average asking prices in Poole and Swindon both down only 5.1%, followed closely by London where the average home has only been reduced in price by 5.2% since coming onto the market.

At the top end of the market, for properties listed for sale at over £1 million, the percentage of properties that have been reduced in price has grown by more than 26% over the past 3 months, up from 22.5% in August, to 28.4% today. And the average discount in this price bracket now stands at 8%.

Nicholas Leeming, Commercial Director of Zoopla.co.uk, said, "For the past few months, asking prices have been somewhat out of kilter with what buyers are prepared or can afford to pay, but sellers are becoming increasingly realistic. The traditional New Year influx of properties coming to the market for sale will mean even more competition among sellers and many are keen to try to secure a buyer this side of Christmas and are lowering their expectations accordingly. As a result, now is a great time for buyers to try to land a bargain."

Top 10 areas with highest number of price-reduced properties

Rank Location % of Listings with
Price Reductions
Avg. Asking
Price Reduction (%)
Avg. Asking
Price Reduction (£)
1 Swindon 49.5% 5.14% £10,299
2 Norwich 46.8% 5.92% £12,478
3 Bournemouth 45.9% 5.74% £14,306
4 Northampton 45.8% 5.68% £11,242
5 Leicester 45.3% 5.93% £10,178
6 Poole 44.4% 5.14% £20,877
7 Birmingham 44.2% 6.65% £10,533
8 Bristol 44.0% 6.77% £15,035
9 Exeter 43.7% 5.60% £15,983
10 Coventry 43.6% 5.87% £13,088

Source: Zoopla.co.uk

Top 10 areas with highest average asking price discounts

Rank Location Avg. Asking Price
Reduction (%)
Avg. Asking Price
Reduction (£)
% of Listings with
Price Reductions
1 Manchester 7.15% £11,923 30.8%
2 Newcastle 7.13% £11,383 31.5%
3 Milton Keynes 7.04% £14,119 43.0%
4 Maidstone 7.03% £16,186 39.7%
5 Rotherham 7.02% £10,121 37.6%
6 Stockport 7.01% £14,971 32.8%
7 Doncaster 6.92% £11,532 41.4%
8 Warrington 6.90% £14,311 42.3%
9 Huddersfield 6.86% £12,536 27.8%
10 Hull 6.86% £9,072 27.8%
Source: Zoopla.co.uk

- Ends -

For further information, please contact Tim Vooght at pr@zoopla.co.uk or on 020 3872 5615.

Notes to editors

About Zoopla.co.uk

Zoopla.co.uk is the UK's most comprehensive property website, focused on empowering consumers with the resources they need to make better-informed property decisions. We help our users make sense of the residential property market by combining property listings with market value data, local information and community tools.

Zoopla.co.uk was founded on the principles of transparency and efficiency and everything we do aims to make the market more effective for both property consumers and professionals alike. By combining free, instant value estimates for every UK home with sold prices, local market information and hundreds of thousands of properties available for sale and to rent, Zoopla.co.uk has rapidly become the ultimate destination for property consumers to search for property and do their market research. Our unique features allow users to gain an insight into the market and discover information they won't find anywhere else. And, as a result, we have become one of the most valued sources of both applicant and vendor leads for UK estate agents.

Launched in 2008, we are the fastest growing property website in the UK, now attracting over 12 million visits per month and are proud to have been awarded numerous accolades including being listed in the Top 10 UK Tech Companies (Guardian) and the Top 10 Most Innovative UK Companies (Smarta 100) as well as being voted the UK's Best Property Portal (Web User, Daily Mail Awards, Website of the Year).

Zoopla Limited is a privately held company with a highly experienced and proven management team, led by Founder and CEO, Alex Chesterman, and backed by well-respected angel investors and leading venture capital firms Atlas Venture (atlasventure.com) and Octopus Ventures (octopusventures.com).

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