House sellers move to slash asking prices in 'challenging' market

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'There are also far too many vendors in London who think a reduction of £10,000 is enough.

Rightmove said a drop in new seller asking prices has been the norm in the run-up to Christmas, with falls recorded in six of the last seven years, but this month's figure is the highest since 2010.

House prices in Britain fell 0.8% compared to the previous month in November, property website Rightmove has said.

More than four in ten London home sellers are cutting asking prices as the capital's housing market continues to slump, according to a Rightmove report.

"You may have to start on a series of price reductions while potential buyers watch and assume that no one is buying your property because something is wrong with it".

Rightmove said that numerous sellers cutting their prices were being "too optimistic" and should make more dramatic reductions.

Shipside said that many of this month's new sellers were being too optimistic by not discounting more than 0.8%. These sellers may well be asking themselves if they could have saved some time and stress by pricing a lot more conservatively than an average of more than 6% ahead of what the market subsequently proved it could sustain, ' said Shipside.

House sellers have traditionally been forced to cut their asking prices in the pre-Christmas period but this year the United Kingdom appears to be holding a collective autumn sale, according to the property website.

According to Halifax, confidence in the housing market has fallen to a five-year low amid growing concerns about the UK's economic outlook. However, the Bank of England's decision this month to raise interest rates for the first time in a decade will have a limited impact on demand, damped by the high proportion of households on fixed-rate mortgages and competition among lenders, Acadata said. For these sellers, their price reductions tempted buyers to make an offer, and a sale has now been agreed.

Founder and chief executive of Russell Quirk commented: "No huge surprise that we are seeing a large proportion of properties reducing asking prices as we head into the quieter festive period, especially given the current market conditions".

The mass price cut will be seen as further evidence that the market has slowed dramatically, particularly in London where prices have been falling.