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Asking prices fall by record £9,000

Asking prices for UK homes fell by a record £9,000 this month as the property market continues to cool, website Rightmove said.

Average asking prices fell by 3.3% in December to £258,424 amid slowing demand and as tighter mortgage limits continue to calm price inflation.

Rightmove's House Price Index still estimates prices will rise by between 4% and 5% next year, boosted by a shortage of property for sale in popular areas such as London, continuing low interest rates and stamp duty reform.

Average asking prices climbed 7% across the country this year.

Rightmove director Miles Shipside said: "The overall picture for the year is still one of a much recovered property market, with sellers and their estate agents confident enough to be putting property on the market at a higher price on average than a year ago, although we predict a slower pace of price growth in 2015."

"This means that sellers and agents will have to work harder to achieve a sale next year."

The survey forecast the South East will see the biggest asking price rises next year as shortages in London, and its ripple effect, will push up prices in the region. It added that the capital is unlikely to lead price rises as it did in 2014.

Last month the average asking price of a home in London tumbled by more than £30,000 to £507,706, according to the report.

Rightmove also predicted that the East and South West regions will outperform northern regions in 2015.

Earlier this month Chancellor George Osborne announced a complete overhaul of the stamp duty levies that people pay when they buy a home.

The move means buyers will no longer pay the tax at a single rate on their entire property price. Instead, the tax will be levied in a graduated way, in a similar way to income tax.

Buyers will only pay the rate of tax on the part of the property price that falls within each stamp duty tax band, resulting in a stamp duty cut for 98% of the people who pay it.

This overhaul has led some commentators to forecast a mini housing market boom in the next few months as more people feel encouraged to move.


From Belfast Telegraph