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by administrator @, Monday, December 19, 2011, 11:03

Predictions for 2012 are for a fragmented and uncertain market, says Rightmove.

New sellers' average asking prices fell by 2.7% in December to leave prices marginally up year-on-year (+1.5%), perhaps a surprising performance given the challenging market. With RPI still at 5.2%, this represents a fall of nearly 4% in real terms, though with wages failing to keep pace with inflation this does not necessarily indicate a corresponding increase in affordability.

Next year 2012 will be similarly challenging and Rightmove forecasts more of the same in the defining metrics of property supply and buyer demand, resulting in another small rise in nominal average asking prices. However, the key to the success of buyers and sellers in 2012 will be their understanding of how the impact of the credit crunch has fragmented traditional local buyer and seller dynamics into a series of highly complex micro-markets.

Miles Shipside, director of Rightmove said: "The market fragmentation caused by the credit crunch means that success in selling now requires a very careful and complex local market analysis. As always it involves location, but the number of mortgage-ready buyers you can attract is now dictated by the type and size of property that you are selling.

"With all but the most appealing properties, pitching at too high a price and waiting for offers is a route to stagnation. Four years of increasingly dire economic news have also trained consumers' brains to look for stand-out value from day one of marketing. Welcome to the complex world of your very own local 'micro-market'."

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