UK housing market 2023: Rightmove forecast for property buying in the UK next year

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After two years of a housing market affected by the pandemic, 2022 has seen the market settle back to pre-pandemic levels - here is one property website’s  forecast for next year.

The housing market has gone through a lot in 2022, starting the year off with record breaking price increases and demand for houses spiking with properties selling faster than ever. As the year went on, however, the market calmed down and returned to levels closer to pre-pandemic levels.

But as the cost of living crisis tightened its grip on the UK, interest and mortgage rates spiked, making many people put their house buying plans on hold. As the year comes to an end, online property and real estate site Rightmove have released their forecast for the housing market in 2023.

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The asking prices in Britain increased by 5.6 per cent in 2022, to an average of £359,137, which is almost £17,000 higher than last year when prices increased by 6.3 per cent. According to Rightmove’s forecast the average asking price will drop by 2 percent next year, which will still keep it above the 2021 average.

During a more stable housing market, buyers have more time to make sure they find their dream home. But during the pandemic years, there has been an imbalance in supply and demand with far more people buying homes than homes being for sale, which has driven the price increase.

Rightmove property expert, Tim Bannister, said: “After two and a half years of frenetic activity, it’s easy to forget that having multiple bidders immediately lining up to buy your home was the exception rather than the norm in pre-pandemic years, and there will be a period of readjustment for home-movers as properties take longer to find the right buyer.

“We’re heading towards a more even balance between supply and demand next year, but we don’t expect more significant price falls in 2023. This is reflected in our prediction of a relatively modest average fall of 2% next year.”

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Guy Gittins, CEO at London estate agents Foxtons, said: “2022 has certainly been a year of two halves. We started the year still riding the wave of momentum from peoples’ changing requirements following Covid.

“As interest rates started to increase the market in London paused to catch its breath, and in the weeks that followed, we saw buyer demand fall sharply. However, there seemed to be a strong number of buyers who had factored higher rates into their budget and were still determined to transact.”

As the housing market stabilises - here are Rightmoves forecast for 2023As the housing market stabilises - here are Rightmoves forecast for 2023
As the housing market stabilises - here are Rightmoves forecast for 2023 | AFP via Getty Images

Rob Kennedy, director at estate agents Philip James Kennedy in Didsbury, told Rightmove: The month of December is a good market barometer as we register the most proactive buyers who are planning on moving in early 2023. Whilst there are less viewings and new instructions in December, we encourage as many new sellers as possible to launch their properties mid-December, as they enjoy high levels of internet activity with clients watching video tours and considering moving over the festive period.

“This culminates in one of the most popular property search days of all, which is Boxing Day, where you definitely want your property to have a presence. These are the properties that will attract the first wave of viewing activity in January and sell first.”

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