House prices reach record levels, Rightmove finds

19 April 2005
Asking prices on homes reached record levels between mid-March and mid-April, property website Rightmove declared yesterday.

The prices rose 1.3 per cent in that period, reaching £197,539 - £1,341 more than the last record high reached last summer.

However, the gap between sellers' aspirations and how much buyers are prepared to pay also widened, with some sellers failing to obtain their inflated asking prices.

Miles Shipside, Rightmove commercial director, said: "It will take much higher interest rates or rises in unemployment to significantly lower sellers' price aspirations. Buyers will have to continue shopping around to find sellers who are pricing more realistically."

Despite sellers' inflated price ambitions, the average number of days a property stayed on the market did fall from 82 to 73 - but it is still up by more than a quarter (29 per cent) on a year ago.

The last four weeks saw the market swamped by new properties as 106,000 new sellers entered the market, but transactions were still below the normal levels seen in springtime.

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