The latest figures suggest the market is shifting in favour of the buyer, with time to securing a sale at 62 days, the longest for six years for this time of the year.
Fewer properties are coming to market but it was also taking longer to secure a buyer meaning that estate agents’ average stock per branch is at its highest since July 2015, Rightmove added.
The number of properties coming to market fell 7.8 per cent in June compared with the same month in 2018. The number of sales agreed dropped by 4.6 per cent in year to date, compared with same period 2018.
Activity was more robust in the lower and middle segments of the market, where buyers were more likely to want a mortgage.
The price of a typical first-time buyer property was flat month-on-month, and for a second purchase it was down 0.2 per cent. The price of new listings for properties of four bedrooms or more fell by 1.1 per cent in June.
Buoyant mortgage activity
“While buoyant mortgage approvals indicate more resilient activity in the lower and middle sectors, it is cash-rich buyers in the upper end of the market who appear most hesitant to engage. They are often discretionary buyers whose needs for more space or motivation for change of location can be postponed,” said Miles Shipside, housing market analyst and director of Rightmove.
“The housing market fundamentals remain largely sound in many parts of the country, but the current political climate means that the crucial ingredient of confidence has been impaired and that is causing some potential buyers and sellers to hesitate.
“With record employment, low interest rates and good mortgage availability, buyers have a lot in their favour apart from the lack of political certainty. Estate agents have more sellers on their books than at any time for the last four years.”
He added that give the sound underlying market fundamentals, there should be a better bargaining opportunity for those who have hesitated and missed the busier spring market.
Shaun Adams, managing director of agency Cooper Adams said: “The market right now is still buoyant but it is changing.
“Maybe lots of people are sick of waiting for Brexit to happen and are just getting on with things. But we anticipate a lull in the run up to October 31.”
Lucian Cook, head of research at estate agency Savills added: “Selling in the current market requires a healthy dose of pragmatism, which is reflect in a a decline in asking prices.”