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More price falls in housing market

UK property asking prices fell for the second month in a row as the market was hit by over-supply and subdued activity in the summer holidays, according to research unveiled today.

Property website Rightmove found sellers slashed prices by 1.7 per cent during the month to August 7, sending the average asking value down by £4,091 to £232,241.

Soaring numbers of sellers outnumbered buyers, with the imbalance in supply and demand compounded as many house hunters took summer holidays.

Rightmove found available stock per agent rose to its highest August level for three years, up 41.3 per cent on a year earlier to 29,220 a week.

It warned market conditions “bear some similarities” to the torrid second half of 2008 when the credit crunch left prices plunging by 7.1 per cent as agents struggling to shift stock.

Today’s news will add to fears of a relapse in the housing market, coming after the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors recently said its members reported falling prices for the first time in a year last month.

Rightmove stressed August was one of two months in the year that traditionally see price falls due to the holiday season, while figures showed values were still higher year-on-year, up 4.3%.

But the latest monthly fall in prices follows a 0.6% drop in July and marks the biggest slide so far this year.