The price of a typical home in England and Wales has grown by 0.4% so far this month, the largest monthly increase for six years, according to the latest Housing Market Survey by Hometrack.
The overall increase in house prices was caused, largely, by homes in London and the South East of England rising by 0.9% and 0.5% respectively, although the low number of homes being placed on the market also pushed up prices during the first three weeks of May.
Despite fewer homes entering the market, demand from prospective buyers has remained strong, highlighted by the fact that a typical home now takes an average of just 8.8 weeks to sell; the shortest timescale seen since July 2010.
Richard O'Donnell, director of research at Hometrack, said: "High moving costs, uncertainty over the outlook for jobs and a lack of available housing to move to, means homeowners remain unwilling to put their own properties on the market. This is only serving to limit supply further.
"Talk of improving market conditions is likely to result in more marginal sellers entering the market in the coming months. The danger is that the pressure to secure instructions will lead to properties being put on the market at unrealistically high prices," he warned.
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