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Gap grows between asking and selling prices: could you save thousands when buying a home?

An increasing number of sellers are accepting less than their original asking price for properties in the UK’s biggest cities, so is now the time for buyers to bag a bargain?

New data from the property portal Zoopla shows that the gap between the average asking price and selling price of UK properties increased to 3.9% in the first quarter of 2019, up from 3.3% in 2018.

Here, we take a look at where the gaps between asking and selling prices are highest, and assess whether now is the right time for you to buy a home.

Where are the biggest property discounts?

Sellers received less than their original asking price in 17 major cities, according to the latest figures from Zoopla.

Buyers in Aberdeen were able to negotiate the biggest percentage discount, paying 8.2% less than the average asking price in the first three months of the year. The average final sale price in the city was £162,300, meaning buyers were able to get a £13,300 discount.

In London, the gap between asking and sale price stood at 5.8%. Typically, buyers in the English capital paid £482,900, £27,800 less than the seller’s initial asking price. 

Buyers in Newcastle and Oxford were also able to get discounts of more than 5%. For house hunters in Newcastle, this meant paying £128,700 on average – £6,895 less than the original asking price.

In the university city of Oxford, buyers paid £410,000, a whopping £21,950 below the price advertised.

Where do buyers pay more than asking price?

Glasgow and Edinburgh are the only places where sellers achieved more than their initial asking price.

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On average, buyers in Glasgow paid £125,200 for properties, which is 5.2% or £6,550 above the price advertised.

In Edinburgh, meanwhile, buyers paid £227,800 for a home – 6.3% or £14,260 more than the figure set by sellers.

While this might suggest it’s a seller’s market in Scotland, it’s important to note that the data also takes into account sellers listening properties as ‘offers from’  or ‘offers in excess of’ a specific figure.

This practice is common in the Scottish property market, which could be one of the reasons why there’s a higher concentration of sellers receiving more than the initial asking price.

House price growth continues to slow

The level of house price growth across the UK has continued to slow down over recent months, according to Zoopla.

On average, house prices across the major cities analysed grew 1.7% year on year in April 2019 – down 0.2% from the 1.9% growth seen year on year in April 2018.

This mirrors national trends seen in house price growth.

Overall, across the UK house prices grew 2.2% year on year in April 2019 to £218,700. This was a notable decrease of 1.1% from the 3.1% growth seen in April 2018.

Properties in Glasgow seem to have bucked the trend, however, with prices growing 5.1% year on year to April 2019 – up from 3.5% in April 2018.

Source: By Brean Horne

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