House sellers hiked their asking prices by more than £8,000 in October in the biggest jump seen in eight months, Rightmove said today.

The typical property asking price rose by 3.5% month-on-month to £243,168, as all regions across England and Wales saw asking prices increase.

Key Points

  • Asking prices rose 3.5% month-on-month in October
  • Typical asking price now £243,168
  • Mortgage availability also increasing

The property search website says the autumn rebound shows "evidence of some life in the market", although it suggests the upturn is most likely due to a lack of properties for sale, meaning would-be buyers have less choice.

The jump means prices are 1.5% higher than a year ago and goes some way to reversing an £11,000 drop in prices between June and September, when the market saw a lull amid distractions such as the Olympics.

London, which has been popular with overseas buyers and continues to perform relatively strongly, saw the biggest monthly increase in asking prices, with a 4.8% jump, taking average prices to £478,071.

The south-east of England and the West Midlands both saw 3.9% increases, while prices rose by 3.8% in north-west England and by 3.4% in Wales. East Anglia saw the smallest increase, with a 0.4% rise.

Mortgage availability increasing

The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) said last week that mortgage lending to home buyers hit a two-year high in August, although it cautioned it is too early to say what long-term effect recently-launched Government schemes to kickstart lending are having.

Mortgage availability has been increasing since an £80 billion funding for lending scheme was launched at the start of August, although much of this has so far been concentrated around people with larger deposits of at least 20%.

Lenders have also toughened their borrowing criteria in recent months and Rightmove says estate agents are still reporting mortgages are no easier to obtain, with lenders "nit-picking" through every detail of applications.