Figures from the latest Rightmove House Price Index reveal that this has been the property market's strongest ever start to a year, with asking prices rising by 1% over last month – the largest January increase since Rightmove started recording this measure in 2002.
This means the average house price now stands at £243,861, up from December 2013's figure of £241,455 and showing a year-on-year rise of 6.3% – the highest annual increase since November 2007. These rising prices are perhaps fuelled by a distinct lack of supply, with just 58 properties per estate agency branch meaning that the market has the lowest stock of property for sale since February 2007.
However, despite ever-rising prices, the figures also indicate that UK homeowners are becoming a lot more optimistic about the property market as a whole, a sentiment that's been backed up by several other surveys over the last month.
Demand for new properties is definitely on the up, further indicating that the level of optimism is increasing. In the first week of January alone the number of newly-marketed properties rose by 4% compared to the same period last year, whilst in the first two weeks the amount of website traffic and email leads from the property site rose by 20% year-on-year, suggesting that 2014 could see another surge of activity.
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