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Property sellers holding firm on asking prices

15th May 2012

Despite some of the recent gloom in the housing market, the number of properties for sale in Britain that have been reduced in price since coming onto the market has actually fallen over the last three months. The average asking price discount has also fallen, despite the changes to stamp duty land tax (SDLT) in March, according to property search website Zoopla.co.uk.

One third (34%) of properties currently for sale have been reduced in price since first coming onto the market – down from 37% in February. And the average discount on the original asking price has fallen by more than £500 over the same period. Average asking price reductions now stand at £19,012 (7.5%).

The drop in proportion and size of asking price discounts has emerged despite the reintroduction of stamp duty for first time buyers and the introduction of the 7% stamp duty tax on properties sold at over £2m.

Nicholas Leeming of Zoopla.co.uk, commented: “The changes to the stamp duty rules significantly increased the cost of buying for many and there were concerns this would quash demand and force sellers to make bigger cuts in their asking prices. However, it appears demand has remained strong enough for average discounts to actually fall.”

The proportion of properties on the market for over £1m that have been reduced in price has also fallen to 27% (down from 30% in February). The total amount knocked off the original asking prices of all properties currently for sale across the country stands at £2.9 billion, with £1.3 billion in reductions in London alone.

Zoopla.co.uk, which lists hundreds of thousands of properties for sale, offers a unique facility that allows house-hunters to sort their property search results by those that have been most reduced in price, highlighting potential property bargains to home buyers and renters.

Newcastle tops the list of places where the biggest discounts are currently being offered by sellers with average reductions of 11.1% (£22,151). Sellers in Liverpool have also made large concessions, knocking 9.2% (£14,031) off their original asking prices on average.

Rotherham has the highest proportion of discounted properties for sale with 43.9% of sellers having cut their asking prices at least once. Other areas with a high proportion of asking price reductions include Swansea (42.5%) and Barnsley (41.6%).

Nicholas Leeming added:, “While sellers in some areas have had to make significant price concessions in order to attract buyers, it’s encouraging to see the overall trend of less price reductions and a drop in the size of these reductions.”

Top 50 Areas with Highest Proportion of Asking Price Reductions

Rank Location % of Homes on Market Reduced Avg. Price Reduction (%) Avg. Price Reduction (£)
1 Rotherham 43.9 8.6 £12,898
2 Swansea 42.51 8.32 £14,254
3 Barnsley 41.58 7.62 £10,238
4 Luton 41.3 6.33 £11,698
5 Croydon 40.62 7.8 £17,870
6 Warrington 40.59 7.53 £14,494
7 Wakefield 40.56 7.73 £14,507
8 Ipswich 40.16 6.2 £12,776
9 Romford 39.94 7.45 £21,917
10 Birmingham 39.93 7.76 £11,810
11 Oxford 39.37 6.54 £23,228
12 Leicester 38.94 7.44 £13,697
13 Colchester 38.77 7.08 £17,144
14 Chelmsford 38.67 6.83 £21,359
15 Northampton 38.67 6.15 £12,326
16 Bradford 38.13 8.3 £12,116
17 Doncaster 37.9 8.31 £14,119
18 Leeds 37.67 7.1 £13,418
19 Chesterfield 37.66 7.79 £12,581
20 Norwich 37.58 6.69 £15,146
21 Cardiff 37.49 6.82 £15,105
22 Glasgow 37.18 8.25 £12,110
23 Coventry 37.11 7.12 £13,072
24 Wigan 36.08 7.85 £12,273
25 Sheffield 35.67 6.97 £11,871
26 Bournemouth 35.63 7.44 £19,175
27 Poole 35.28 8.08 £29,597
28 Milton Keynes 35.17 6.15 £13,096
29 Plymouth 35.05 6.05 £11,267
30 Derby 34.79 6.28 £11,384
31 Bristol 34.72 6.11 £13,934
32 Wolverhampton 34.68 7.44 £11,056
33 Nottingham 34.64 7.35 £12,296
34 Liverpool 34.27 9.24 £14,031
35 Southampton 34.22 7.09 £15,982
36 Manchester 33.35 7.88 £13,013
37 Newcastle 33.11 11.11 £22,151
38 Hull 32.82 8.28 £9,453
39 Bolton 32.29 7.47 £13,015
40 Stockport 31.54 7.4 £17,512
41 Lincoln 30.44 7.14 £11,622
42 Mansfield 30.27 7.5 £10,004
43 London 30.11 7.17 £36,433
44 Stoke-on-Trent 29.62 7.69 £10,999
45 Preston 29.19 6.95 £13,862
46 Reading 28.34 5.86 £19,181
47 Sunderland 27.97 8.41 £12,247
48 York 27.61 6.12 £15,288
49 Peterborough 27.3 7.46 £13,857
50 Blackpool 26.71 7.28 £9,736

- Ends -

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

Notes to editors

Zoopla is the UK's most comprehensive property website, focused on empowering users with the resources they need to make better-informed property decisions. We help consumers both find their next home and research the market by combining hundreds of thousands of property listings with market data, local information and community tools.

At Zoopla we are fans of transparency and everything we do is aimed at making the market more efficient for both property consumers and advertisers alike. Zoopla has rapidly become the UK’s leading online destination for property consumers to search for homes and do their market research and the favoured online marketing partner for UK estate agents, letting agents and property developers.

Launched in 2008, Zoopla has since been one of the fastest growing websites in the UK, now attracting over 40 million visits per month and we are proud to have collected numerous awards and accolades along the way, including being named one of the Top 10 UK Tech Companies (Guardian) and one of the Top 10 Most Innovative UK Companies (Smarta).

Zoopla is part of Zoopla Limited which was founded in 2007.

Zoopla Limited, The Cooperage, 5 Copper Row, London, SE1 2LH
Registered in England and Wales with Company No. 09005884
VAT Registration number: 191 2231 33
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