The time it takes to sell a property has increased by five days in last 12 months

The average time to sell a property in the UK has increased from 72 days in January 2018 to 77 days in the current market, according to new research.

Towns in the North West of England are where sellers have seen the biggest improvements from last year, with Burnley, Morecambe, Widnes, Lancaster and Oldham all cutting their selling time by at least 14 days.

The data from property portal Rightmove, which is based on when a property if first listed until it is marked as under offer, also shows that Runcorn in Cheshire has the fastest moving housing market outside of London.

Indeed, Runcorn, where the average asking price is £132,653, reduced its selling time by three weeks from 69 in 2018 to just 48 days currently, which is 29 days quicker than the national average. Experts in the area suggest this could have been driven by the opening of the Mersey Gateway Bridge.

In Scotland, Livingston is where homes are selling quickest. On average, it takes just 35 days for properties to get snapped up in the West Lothian town and Redditch in the West Midlands which takes top spot as the fastest selling market in England, with properties in the Worcestershire town selling in 45 days, on average.

Gloucester in the South West and Wellingborough in the East Midlands are the second and third quickest to sell locations in England, although homes in Gloucester are taking two days longer to sell than they were this time last year. In Wales, Newport is the fastest moving housing market, with homes being sold in 47 days there.

Rightmove’s property expert Miles Shipside said:

‘This analysis reflects what agents have recently been telling us, and what we saw in Rightmove’s house price index, that more northerly regions are faring better in terms of pricing power and willingness to move than those farther south.

‘Agents report that properties in the North West are seeing positive market conditions with strong demand from buyers. Once again improvements in local level infrastructure is a key factor, with the top areas benefiting from better transport links to bigger city centre employment hubs.’

According to Alex Nam, junior partner and valuer Bests Estate Agents in Runcorn, said that the research tallies with what the firm has seen over the last 12 to 18 months.

Alex Nam said:

‘There has been a shortage of stock and the speed of sales has been among some of the quickest I’ve seen.

‘The Mersey Gateway Bridge has opened during that period, so I imagine that has had an impact, for sure. You can get from Runcorn to Liverpool city centre in 20 minutes by car now, which means the area will be even more attractive to investors and buyers.

‘Our big traffic problems have been alleviated and it’s been a significant infrastructure change. But there is still limited choice and the area has usually generated fairly reasonable yields in the buy to let market, so it’s no surprise things have been speeding up recently.’


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