The number of house sellers who have slashed money off their original asking price is at a record low for the summer months as confidence flows back into the market, a property website has reported.
Less than one-third (32%) of sellers whose homes are currently on the market were found by Zoopla to have reduced their asking price, marking the lowest proportion it has seen for the summer quarter since the website's records began three years ago.
Zoopla said its latest findings are a further indication that sellers are becoming more confident about standing firm to get what they want. This time last year, 37% of house sellers had shaved money off their asking price to attract a buyer.
However, the findings also indicate that seller confidence generally remains patchy . Two in five current house sellers in Barnsley, Rotherham and Wakefield have made cuts to their asking prices, compared with around one in four residents of London or Edinburgh.
The typical size of asking price reductions ranges from just over 5% in Edinburgh, Swindon and Ipswich to nearly 10% in Poole.
The share of sellers generally offering discounts has edged up only slightly from 31% in spring. The summer holiday season usually sees a big uplift in sellers knocking money off their asking prices as the market traditionally quietens down.
But demand from buyers has been gathering pace in recent months amid Government efforts to breathe new life into the market and a general lack of homes on the market for buyers to choose from.
Housing market activity has generally seen more of a buzz since the Government launched a scheme called Funding for Lending, which has widened mortgage availability. The Council of Mortgage Lenders reported that business was at its strongest levels in the month of July since 2008.
Zoopla found that sellers who have reduced their original asking prices have imposed a 6.3% cut on average, compared with a bigger 7.6% typical discount seen a year ago. The findings were taken from homes listed for sale on Zoopla.co.uk.
Lawrence Hall, spokesman for Zoopla, said: "A fall in the proportion and level of asking price discounts suggests sellers are feeling more confident and happy to wait it out to achieve their target asking price."
Here are the areas with the highest proportion of asking price reductions, with the percentage of homes on the market which have been reduced and the average reduction in percentage and cash terms:
1. Barnsley, 42.7%, 8.1%, £11,663
2. Rotherham, 42.3%, 7.4%, £10,941
3. Wakefield, 42.1%, 7.2%, £14,029
4. Wigan, 40.8%, 7.5%, £11,969
5. Sunderland, 40.2%, 8.0%, £12,157
Here are the areas with the biggest asking price percentage reductions, with the amount also in cash terms and the percentage of homes on the market which have been reduced:
1. Poole, 9.9%, £51,835, 29.3%
2. Liverpool, 8.2%, £13,664, 37.8%
3. Doncaster, 8.2%, £14,186, 39.1%
4. Barnsley, 8.1%, £11,663, 42.7%
5. Bolton, 8.1%, £14,945, 34.1%
Here are the areas with the lowest proportion of asking price reductions, with the percentage of homes on the market which have been reduced and the average reduction in percentage and cash terms:
1. London, 22.8%, 7.3%, £66,575
2. Edinburgh, 27.7%, 5.3%, £14,722
3. Wolverhampton, 29.1%, 5.4%, £12,064
4. Bournemouth, 29.1%, 7.5%, £27,754
5. Poole, 29.3%, 9.9%, £51,835
Here are the areas with the lowest asking price percentage reductions, with the amount also in cash terms and the percentage of homes on the market which have been reduced:
1. Edinburgh, 5.3%, £14,722, 27.7%
2. Swindon, 5.3%, £10,665, 32.9%
3. Ipswich, 5.4%, £13,677, 37.7%
4. Wolverhampton, 5.4%, £12,064, 29%
5. Milton Keynes, 5.5%, £14,935, 30%