By Vicky Shaw, PA Personal Finance Correspondent
The average price tag on a home has hit a new record high for the third month in a row – pushing over the £360,000 mark – according to a website.
Over the past three months, the average asking price has surged by £19,082 – the biggest cash jump Rightmove has recorded in any three-month period since its records started.
It said the average asking price has jumped by £5,537 in the past month alone.
Across Britain, the average asking price for a home in April is now £360,101, up from £354,564 in March.
More than half (53%) of properties are selling at or over their final advertised asking price, amid high demand for a limited stock of properties, the website added. It is the highest percentage Rightmove said it has ever measured.
Properties are achieving 98.9% of the final advertised asking price on average, which is also the highest percentage for Rightmove’s records.
The average time it takes to sell a property has halved over the past three years, according to Rightmove’s figures.
Three years ago, the average time to sell was 67 days, but that has fallen to 33 days for listings on the website.
Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s director of property data, said: “With three new monthly price records in a row, 2022 has started with price rise momentum even greater than during the stamp duty holiday-fueled market of last year.
“While growing affordability constraints mean that this momentum is not sustainable for the longer term, the high demand from a large number of buyers chasing too few properties for sale has led to a spring price frenzy, a hat-trick of record price months, and the largest price increase for a three-month period Rightmove has ever recorded.
“The strong momentum has carried over from last year and, combined with the impetus of the spring moving season, has delivered the quickest selling market we’ve ever seen.
“The high speed of the market and competition among buyers when making an onward move will be deterring some owners from putting their homes up for sale.
“However, if you can secure both a quick sale and a quick purchase then it’s a lot less stressful than the uncertainties of a slower market when finding a buyer for your own home can drag on for months or not happen at all.”
Looking ahead, Mr Bannister added: “The economic headwinds of strongly rising inflation and modestly rising interest rates are being kept at bay by the even stronger tailwind of property market momentum that has carried over from last year.
“2021 saw four consecutive monthly price records from April through to July and I would not bet against that being bettered this year as we are already at three consecutive records in April.
“There are some early signs of an easing off from the frenetic pace of price rises, and buyer inquiries to agents are down by 16% on last year’s stamp-duty frenzy.
“However incredibly, buyer inquiries are still 65% above the more normal market of 2019 and the number of sales agreed is up 21%.”
He added: “With the demand and supply imbalance being so out of kilter, it looks like any substantial slowdown will be gradual in coming and be a soft rather than hard landing.
“It seems likely that the supply/demand mismatch will remain for at least the rest of this year. Even with some economic uncertainty, where you live and your home is such a fundamental decision for people that it will remain a priority for many.”
The report also quoted the views of estate agents.
Jon Brierley, managing director at Lennon James Property in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, said: “”Well marketed and sensibly priced homes are in huge demand, with a queue of proceedable buyers waiting in the wings, which has resulted in homes launching onto the market and being snapped up within a matter of days.
“The influx of buyers relocating to Cambridgeshire from London and the M25 corridor has been particularly noticeable with employers being more relaxed around home working.”
Ailsa Mather, director at Andrew Coulson in Hexham, Northumberland, said: “Here in the Tyne Valley we are finding there is still a huge demand for property but supplies of stock are low.
“It means a lot of buyers are chasing the same houses, resulting in many properties going to best offers.”
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