The average number of buyers registered per branch over a 12-month period stood at 447 for 2021, the highest level seen since 2004, according to data from Propertymark.
However, in 2004 the average branch had 52 properties for sale and was more able to meet buyer demand, whereas in October 2021 this figure was just 21.
Nathan Emerson, chief executive of Propertymark, said: “This supply and demand imbalance has driven house prices high, and in March 2021 when the property transaction tax holiday was extended, Propertymark figures show a shift from an eight year-long buyers’ market into the strong sellers’ market we are seeing now.”
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Since 2013, the majority of homes have sold for less than asking price, but over 2021, Propertymark noted that homes have largely sold for asking price or over.
Looking ahead, Emerson said interest rates will likely rise next year, but should remain low when compared with historic rates.
He added: “With climate change high on the agenda, next year we could see binding targets on homeowners to improve the energy performance of their homes and legislation affecting leasehold property and building safety will conclude their passages through parliament.
“Energy efficiency will continue to be a big conversation, but what we need to see from all UK governments is clarity and support for both homeowners and landlords.”
Emerson added that within the private rented sector (PRS), rental income is poised to remain strong as demand holds steady.
However, the PRS is still awaiting the Renters’ Reforms White Paper, with 2022 looking like it could be the year the UK government sets out the abolition of Section 21 and what will replace it.
Emerson added: “Many agents are warning of the loss of landlords from the market and the effect it could have on homelessness and rent rises.”