By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies to enhance your experience.
Graham Awards


Time for Investors to Buy? Discounts rise to £18,000

House prices fell 1.2 per cent in the past year, according to a new Zoopla report out today, with average discounts on homes currently for sale reaching new highs.

The average discount agreed on a sale has reached £18,000 – or 5.5 per cent – which is the biggest gap in five years.

The number of properties for sale is up 34 per cent in a year, to a six-year high. The average estate agency branch has 31 homes for sale, compared to a low of just 14 in the middle of the pandemic boom.


Sarah Coles, head of personal finance, Hargreaves Lansdown, says: “Black Friday has hit the property market, which means a bleak time for sellers. They’re having to slash 5.5 per cent off asking prices to secure a sale, providing the biggest discounts for five years. This doesn’t bode well for the future of property prices.

“The root of the problem is a lack of buyers, because higher mortgage rates are pushing potential properties out of reach. Demand is down 13 per cent from this point in 2019. At the same time, we’ve seen a rebound in the number of properties for sale – up a third in a year – so any potential buyers have plenty to choose from.

“It means sellers are having to pull out all the stops to shift their homes – including cutting the price. So far, this is ensuring that sensibly-priced properties are finally shifting, with sales up 15 per cent in a year. However, it’s worth bearing in mind the mini-Budget had unleashed carnage in the mortgage markets 12 months ago, so any comparison was bound to look fairly flattering.”

Coles warns that the worst is far from over. In a market like this, an awful lot of sellers will decide now is not the time to be trying to sell, and take their house off the market for now. 

The Office for Budget Responsibility thinks transactions will keep dropping from here, and will be down an average of 6.9 per cent in 2024.

Coles continues: “This will take a toll on house prices. The OBR expects them to fall 4.7 per cent in 2024 – taking the peak-to-trough drop to 7.6 per cent. Even then it doesn’t think we’ll bounce back in a hurry, and will take until the second half of 2027 to get back to their 2022 peak.”

Want to comment on this story? Our focus is on providing a platform for you to share your insights and views and we welcome contributions.
If any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.
Please help us by reporting comments you consider to be unduly offensive so we can review and take action if necessary. Thank you.

  • icon

    The price of housing is never static. It's either going up or down, and there are reasons for both.

    If property prices drops £50k, but the investor only receives a long-term 3% yield, it's a poor investment. If the property increases by £50k and is likely to increase further with a rental yield of 15%, then it's a good deal. Profit comes with looking at the detail and generally speaking property rental is not a good investment where mortgages and government interference are high as both reduce the investor's income.

  • Nic  Kaz

    Buying in a falling market isn’t tempting unless you are convinced it’s fallen as far as it will go, and the forecast, even in this article, is that there is still a downward trend. Even at the bottom, don’t expect a big influx of new, keen BTL investors, those days have been legislated away specifically to create this situation. Yet less people now have a place to call home….

  • icon

    This story may well be accurate for the period it reflects. However, imo we have passed that point. It is a very interesting market that i believe has hit bottom. We may stay here a month or 3, but come Spring and lenders offering some sweet deals it will crawl back up.


Please login to comment

MovePal MovePal MovePal
sign up