Asking prices slashed to tempt home buyers from Olympics

Sellers putting their homes on the market slashed asking prices in August in a bid to tempt would-be buyers away from the Olympics, according to the property webside Rightmove.

The company reported a dramatic 2.4 per cent fall in asking prices to £236,260 – a record fall for the month – as more homes came on to the market.

But the huge draw of London 2012 hit Rightmove as the amount of time spent property-surfing plunged sharply with traffic down as much as half during the opening and closing ceremonies, Team GB's "Super Saturday" of three gold medals and the Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt's sprint double.

Nearly 130,000 sellers put their homes on the market in August, Rightmove said.

Director Miles Shipside said: "The number of new sellers is slightly up on the same period last year, though perhaps as a reflection of their urgency to sell, or to compensate for the distraction of the achievements served up by Team GB, they have dropped their asking prices more aggressively than summer sellers in previous years."

Sellers in the South-east cut asking prices deepest, with a 4.2 per cent drop, as prices were lowered in every region of the UK except the North-west, Rightmove said. New homes are taking on average 92 days to sell in a sluggish market.

Mr Shipside added: "Any seller coming to market and hoping to move before Christmas needs to get their skates on to tempt a buyer who can proceed. It is possible that they may be assisted by the Bank of England's Funding for Lending scheme, which may lead to greater mortgage availability at more competitive rates."

Recession figures to be revised

Glimmers of encouragement on the double-dip recession should emerge this week as number crunchers take a more upbeat view of the UK's performance between April and June.

In news that will cheer Chancellor George Osborne, the Office for National Statistics' initial estimate of a 0.7 per cent second-quarter slump, due to the extra day off for the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, looks to have been overly pessimistic. Britain's builders have also seen a shallower fall than accounted for in initial estimates. Economists say these two factors should add 0.2 of a percentage point to output, taking the UK's overall decline over the quarter to 0.5 per cent.

With the Bank of England's rate-setters pencilling in a 0.5 per cent hit from the Jubilee, the underlying economy is likely to be stagnant rather than shrinking and may even have managed modest growth, experts say.

Retailers also enjoyed a more buoyant June than estimated.

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
Property search
Property search
  • Get to the point
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Ashdown Group: Part-time Payroll Officer - Yorkshire - Professional Services

£25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful professional services firm is lo...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before