Online real estate portal Rightmove saw over 150 million visits to its website in January, making it the “busiest month ever recorded”.
The group reported a 7% increase in visits compared with the same period last year, and the previous record for the busiest month was last set in May 2019.
The top five busiest days for the property site were between 21 and 29 January, with Wednesday 29 January “topping the list” with 5.7 million visits on that day. Additionally, time spent by “house hunters” on the site was up 4%.
The number of sales being agreed by agents was also up 12% compared with the same month in 2019, the biggest year-on-year jump in any month since July 2017. London saw the biggest increase, up 26% year-on-year, followed by the east of England, up 20%.
Rightmove’s property expert, Miles Shipside, said: “Home-movers have sprung into action in 2020, with a large number of agents telling us that sales and valuations have picked up significantly in their local areas.
“There’s still an imbalance, with demand growing at a faster rate than new supply and no clear sign yet of any uplift in new listings compared to this time last year, but we could see a new wave of sellers in the coming weeks.”
He added: “The annual jump in sales agreed numbers is the highest we’ve seen in any month since the summer of 2017, which saw a significant uplift compared to summer 2016 because of the short-term dip in activity immediately after the Brexit vote.
“The stage certainly looks set for an active spring if those sellers considering putting their homes up for sale end up doing so, but to catch this wave of buyer momentum sellers should take care not to overprice their homes. It’s still a price sensitive market and there’s a limit to what buyers can borrow even though mortgage interest rates are temptingly low.”