Date Published 21 August 2020
We've seen a huge increase in sales activity over the past few weeks, so, it appears it's not just the British weather that's heating up.
According to the latest Halifax House Price Index the average price of a UK home was £241,604 last month, 1.7% higher than June's £237,834. Zoopla also reports that property prices in Worthing have crept up by 3.5% over the last quarter.
So, are we seeing a bounce back in the property market or is it just a blip?
It's generally thought that pent-up demand and a lack of properties on the market have combined to push up prices. The government's announcement back in July to cut stamp duty has also boosted buyers' enthusiasm and Rightmove have announced record levels of new instructions being added to their website. We have certainly seen this on a local level with high numbers of new property listings.
Last month Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a temporary suspension of stamp duty on property sales up to £500,000 in England and Northern Ireland. This meant that in some cases buyers could save up to £15,000 on purchases. Although it's worth bearing in mind that this scheme only runs until March 2021.
On the face of it, things seem to be looking up as far as housing is concerned, however the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic are still creating a great deal of long-term uncertainty. With some areas pushed back into lock down, concerns over employment and the worries over a second wave, people are rightly cautious about making big decisions and there aren't many bigger ones than moving.
We will see the government support measures come to an end over the next few months and this is likely to influence the confidence in the market. If unemployment rises, then it's possible that this spike in confidence will be short lived. A lot now hinges on the economy, consumer confidence and Government decision making. The priorities at this point seem to be focused towards kick starting the economy and re-introducing children back into education. No doubt we will learn more in the coming weeks as to what further interventions the Government will take or if there are any changes to the current schemes.
It's always a tricky process to predict what's going to happen with housing, more so now than ever as so many variables are at play. However if you're looking to make a move over the next few months we can say that at this point in time the market seems buoyant and there is certainly plenty of activity.
Our top tips for August:
With so many of us dealing with the effects of being confined to our homes over the past few months, outside space has become an important feature when house hunting, searches for properties with gardens have shot up. I imagine that most of us have immaculate outside space now, well what else were we doing over lockdown, but it's certainly a good idea to make sure it's well presented before allowing people to come around and view.
Although the market appears strong and house prices have increased, it's important to be realistic about pricing. We've been fortunate to see a number of our properties sell for above the asking price, however, going in high at the start often leads to properties struggling to get traction and interest. Remember, that with more information on hand than ever before, buyers have a wealth of tools at their disposal to calculate and compare house prices.
Make sure you stand out from the crowd, with more and more properties coming to market, it's important that your property listing looks superior to everyone else's. We use professional photography and unique lifestyle descriptions for every property, it means that when potential buyers are flicking through the internet, yours is the one that jumps out and has an impact.
Whether you're off on holidays, having a staycation or just spending time with the family this summer, we wish you good fortune, happiness and most of all good health.
As always if you need any advice or are interested in moving over the next few months, please feel free to get in touch.