The best and worst locations for selling homes in the UK during 2019 have been analysed in the latest data from estate agent comparison site GetAgent. The housing market managed to tick over despite the domination by Brexit but it has not been an easy time.
GetAgent extracts data from all the major portals which they cross-reference with information from the Land Registry using specific algorithms to compile a comprehensive record of sales, locations, prices and selling times.
The results show that, on average across the nation, sellers found their home took 256 days to sell from the first online listing to completion. This figure rose to 295 days in London.
Furthermore, the average time increased throughout the year, taking 250 days during the first quarter of 2019 and rising by 8.5% to 271 days in the final quarter, up 3.3% between the third and fourth quarters.
Peaks and troughs
The region that suffered the longest market slowdown was Eden in the Lake District, where the average property sale took an incredible 393 days to complete! Westminster experienced the second longest selling time and was the worst area in London, taking 390 days to complete.
Ceredigion came top as the slowest market in Wales with the average sale running on for 388 days, while sellers in Islington (373), Camden (333), Copeland (332) and Richmond (331) also found sales took longer than 330 days. Gwynedd, Kensington and Chelsea, Bournemouth, Lambeth and Malvern Hills all made the list of the top 20 slowest house sales of 2019.
But it wasn’t all doom and gloom for UK home owners and, as always, some locations defied wider market conditions to benefit from much faster sales. The best in the UK was Nuneaton and Bedworth, where the average sale took just 191 days from the first online listing to completion.
Torfaen was the best-performing market in Wales with homes selling in 193 days on average, while Bromsgrove in the Midlands ranked third at 197 days.
Areas where property sold in well under 210 days included Trafford, Bolsover, North East Lincolnshire and Stockport. In the Midlands, homes in Walsall, Wellingborough, Charnwood, Mansfield, Redditch and Coventry sold as quickly.
In the capital, Bexley (230), Barking and Dagenham (235) and Newham (247) were notable for achieving some of the fastest house sales in 2019.
Election result boosts sales
Colby Short, founder and CEO of GetAgent, commented that it was clear the continuing market uncertainty regarding Brexit had had a direct impact on selling times across the UK in 2019.
The lack of certainty, she added, increased steadily throughout the year and culminated in the longest sale times of the year, caused by a combination of pre-election jitters and a seasonal market slowdown in the final quarter of the year.
The UK property sector, Short continued, is diverse, consisting of many different markets independent of each other with their own levels of supply and demand and rates of house price growth. Consequently, while the average seller had little choice but to sit it out for the best part of nine months until completion, many owners were able to complete more quickly.
As for the future, Short concluded, it is evident now that the election result has stimulated a prompt market revival, and with the prospect of higher levels of buying and selling, there should be a significant reduction over the coming year in the time taken to sell property.