Hopes are high that the deterioration in the housing market may have drawn to a close after new sellers increased average asking prices by 1.8 per cent, or almost £4,000, in April. Prices have now increased three months in a row, while the latest rise is the largest seen for 14 months, according to Rightmove. Twenty-two thousand new sellers are being tempted to the market each week, a 13 per cent rise on March. These figures are a good indicator that there is growing confidence in the property market and a feeling that it's a good time to trade up, with many deals in the offing. While there have certainly been some encouraging signs of late, consumers have once again been warned to put any signs of recovery in context as mortgage approvals are still just a third of recent levels. Miles Shipside, commercial director of the property website, believes that many sellers are still setting their stall out too high, but that their greater numbers and confidence to ask more is an encouraging sign. "It looks like we are now bumping along the bottom of the trough, but for there to be any real sense of optimism that we're on a sustainable road to recovery, the availability of mortgage finance needs to improve significantly," he added.
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