New property listings fell by 21.5% across the UK in November, following three months of small rises, according to the latest Property Supply Index compiled by online estate agents HouseSimple.com.
It says this is the biggest drop in property supply in any one month since the Index launched in May 2015.
Property supply in London also slumped in November vs October, falling by 21%. Not a single London borough saw a rise in property listings in November.
To compile its Property Supply Index, HouseSimple.com tracks the number of new properties listed on Rightmove every month, in more than 100 major towns and cities across the UK and all London boroughs.
Bath experienced the biggest drop in property supply in November, with new property listings down 42.6%, following a steady decline in supply each month since June. According to Rightmove figures, only 135 new properties in Bath were listed in November, compared to a high of 284 in June.
West Midland cities, Worcester and Solihull, saw new property listings drop 41% and 39% respectively in November. While, the North West of England had five towns/cities in the 15 worst regions in the UK in terms of the biggest falls in new housing stock.
Chichester and Salford were the only towns in the UK to see an increase in new property listings in November compared to October, with rises of 14.8% and 11.6% respectively.
According to Rightmove figures, Bootle and Swansea have seen the biggest swing in property supply in the past two months, with October seeing a 47.4% and 36.6% rise respectively in property supply compared to September, followed by a 35.1% and 23.9% fall respectively in supply in November compared to October.
London has seen a large drop in new property listings in November, with supply down 21% compared to October. The borough of Richmond upon Thames saw new property listings drop by 31% in November. While, the boroughs of Bromley and Hillingdon, each experienced a 30% drop off in new property listings last month.
The figures reveal that there wasn’t a single London borough that saw an increase in new listings in November. Greenwich and Barking and Dagenham experienced the smallest falls in supply, with new listings down just 5% and 9% last month compared to October. More than half the capital’s boroughs – 18 of the 32 – saw new stock levels fall by more than a fifth in November vs October.
Alex Gosling, CEO of online estate agents HouseSimple.com, said: “Everyone knows by now that we have a property supply issue in this country, but these latest figures reveal just how severe that problem is as we head into the New Year. The total number of new property listings in November across the UK was just over 65,000 – that is nearly 20,000 less than in October, and the lowest level since we launched the Property Supply Index in May.
“Historically, as we get closer to Christmas, the property market does start to slow down, so a fall in property supply levels is not unexpected. However, the drop off is too dramatic to be simply attributed to seasonality factors alone.
“The government has implemented several schemes to help people get onto the property market, the latest of which being the Help to Buy ISA. However, they aren’t addressing the supply shortage, and if there are no homes to buy, these schemes are just window dressing.
“It is vital the housing market starts the New Year with vigour, because there are some potentially stormy seas ahead with the new buy to let stamp duty hikes looming large on the horizon.”