Further to my last market comment, things have now moved to a “Buyers” market; There are few times over the past five years that are as good as this period to buy a new home. There is a lot of talk about a “Buyers” market; in simple terms, it means that the weight and ability to negotiate the sale and purchase of a home has shifted to be more in favour of Buyers than Sellers, and this has mainly been driven not by stock levels, but more the prices anticipated by Vendors has become more realistic than it has been over the past years.
It is a mixed bag when it comes to the Spring market, as there are many factors that will make it an interesting time; the inflation figures remain encouraging and mortgage interest rates appear to have reached their peak. This is certainly what lenders are indicating with mortgage rates beginning to drop. However, for those who are having to re-mortgage the impact is just beginning to show and this will come out with stock levels during the early part of next year. There are mixed feelings about when the election will take place next year, but this also will have a significant impact on the market, I think it is more likely to be later in the year – but let’s see!
As ever, those with cash and who are ready to go, remain in the strongest and ideal position. The next three months are possibly the best time to buy. Houses and gardens will only get “better” over the Spring and Summer and those selling now, either must sell, or the house is attractive, well priced and exceptional enough that it will achieve its guide or more, as it would at any time of year.
Many agents will encourage Vendors to wait till the Spring, but there remains a strong level of demand for houses, both from the traditional young families moving out of London for schools or family, but also from overseas buyers; In particular, I am seeing more demand from the USA for properties in and around the Cotswolds.
I have several clients, with quite specific requirements, and stock levels now are not producing the right houses for them; this will come during the Spring – and as ever it is a case of having your finger very much on the pulse and being in a position where you can move effectively and quickly when the right property comes.
I think next year will see a lot of activity; in the case that Labour wins the election, the changes in VAT in relation to private education is going to create some new “prime” areas where there are both excellent state/grammar and private schools within close proximity. These locations will always remain a very important consideration when buying but may become something than needs further attention.
I remain confident that next year will be busy, with a lively Spring market, despite the many internal and external factors that continue to have an impact on it.