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June 22, 2010    

Rightmove: asking prices set to fall

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by Gill Montia

The average asking price for a home in the UK increased by 0.3% in June, compared with May, according to Rightmove.

However, the sixth consecutive monthly rise left prices falling in real terms, with the Retail Prices Index showing an annual increase of 5.1% in June, compared with a year-on-year rise in asking prices of 5%.

The average number of unsold properties on estate agents’ books stood at 74, up from 71 in May, with stock levels now at their highest since October 2008.

The abolition of Home Information Packs in May was largely behind a 22% increase in sellers coming to the market, and Rightmove warns of tougher times ahead as Government measures to reduce the budget deficit also “disrupt the fragile housing recovery”.

The firm’s commercial director, Miles Shipside, comments: “The continuing mortgage famine has now been joined by a surge in sellers following the abolition of HIPs and investor reticence driven by rumours of CGT increases.”

He adds: “Together, these factors are likely to put an end to this year’s recovery in house prices.”

Rightmove is therefore forecasting a fall in asking prices during the second half of 2010.

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