Date Published 23 July 2018
There is good news for Worthing's buy to let landlords as ‘top of the range' well presented properties are getting decent rents compared to a year ago. However, this rise in rents is thwarting many potential first time buyers from saving for both a deposit and money for a rainy day. On top of this, there is also a shortage of properties in Worthing coming on the market, adding fuel to the slowdown and affecting not just first-time buyers in Worthing but also those going up the housing ladder.
Whilst it is true that Government initiatives, targeted at improving the supply of homes built and helping first time buyers obtaining necessary funding are starting to work, albeit slowly, I also believe that to encourage more existing home-owners and their properties onto the market we need to see a better focus placed on those looking to downsize (i.e. the mature generation).
New figures from the Equity Release Council show that owners aged 55-plus unlocked a record £971m from their homes in the second quarter of this year, between April and June. This represents a 39 per cent year-on-year increase from the second quarter of 2017. If we took away some hurdles to home owners downsizing, such as removing stamp duty (as has previously been done for first time buyers), whilst still incentivising first-time buyers to buy the smaller properties, this would in turn release more mid-range properties onto the market, which would subsequently encourage more mature homeowners to downsize from their bigger properties to buy those mid-range properties - thus completing the circle.
Looking at the most recent set of data from the Land Registry for Worthing (the BN11 postcode in particular), the figures show the indifferent nature of the current Worthing property market.
Only 355 homes in Worthing (BN11) changed hands in the last 6 months.
Worthing property values and transactions continue to be sluggish, and the monthly peaks and troughs of house prices and properties changing hands doesn't mask the deficiency of suitable realistically priced property coming onto the market in Worthing, meaning the housing market is slowly becoming inaccessible to some would-be home owners.
Looking at what each property type is selling for in BN11 (note the data from the Land Registry is always 4/5 months behind) makes interesting reading.
One must remember these are the average prices paid, so it only takes a run of a few expensive or cheaper property types (as can be seen with the variance in the Terraced and Apartments in the table) to affect the figures.
Looking at the numbers of properties for sale- I looked at my research for early Summer 2008, and at that time 2,595 properties were on the market for sale in Worthing. When I did my research on this article just 1,119 properties are for sale - a drop of 57%.
The Government needs to seriously consider the supply and demand of the UK property market as a whole to ensure it doesn't seize up. It needs to do that with bold and forward-thinking plans but, in the meantime, people still need a roof over their head. Therefore, because local authorities don't have the funds to build new houses anymore, it's become the job of Worthing landlords to take up the slack. I must stress though, I have noticed a distinct ‘flight to quality' by tenants in Worthing, who are prepared to pay top dollar for an exceptional home to rent. If you want to know what tenants are looking for and what type of things you as a Worthing landlord need to do to maximise your rental returns – Please get in touch.
All the best