If we all get real about prices there are rea­sons to be cheer­ful

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY - Tim War­ing

SO what is hap­pen­ing in the res­i­den­tial prop­erty mar­ket at present? It is a ques­tion that many es­tate agents are be­ing asked on a daily ba­sis. It might seem a con­tra­dic­tion in terms given the raft of eco­nomic data, but ac­tu­ally I am very op­ti­mistic about the York­shire res­i­den­tial prop­erty mar­ket this au­tumn. One word prob­a­bly sums up the rea­son for my pos­i­tive stand­point, namely, re­al­ism.

Home own­ers across the county, who are com­mit­ted to sell­ing, now ac­cept that ask­ing prices have to be sen­si­ble if they are to at­tract a buyer. The re­sult is an in­creas­ing hous­ing stock that is re­al­is­ti­cally priced. For­tu­nately, po­ten­tial pur­chasers seem to be ap­pre­ci­at­ing this sense of re­al­ism given we are cer­tainly ex­pe­ri­enc­ing an in­creas­ing num­ber of view­ings. In­deed, in Septem­ber, Knight Frank of­fices across the UK saw a 48 per cent surge in view­ing vol­umes com­pared with Au­gust, with an en­cour­ag­ing 21 per cent in­crease in new buyer reg­is­tra­tion over the same pe­riod.

So, with an in­crease in the num­ber of peo­ple want­ing to buy, and ac­tu­ally car­ry­ing out view­ings as well, per­haps you can start to un­der­stand where my op­ti­mism lies. But view­ings are one thing, what about ac­tual sales?

Well, again there is good news this au­tumn. Septem­ber has seen a 27 per cent in­crease in the vol­ume of our prop­er­ties be­ing put un­der of­fer in com­par­i­son to Au­gust, and this al­most matches the same pe­riod last year. Fur­ther­more, where sales are be­ing agreed, our re­cent ex­pe­ri­ence shows own­ers that are adopt­ing sen­si­ble ask­ing prices to en­tice buy­ers, are ac­tu­ally achiev­ing around 95 per cent of the guide be­ing quoted.

So while times are not easy, mar­ket ev­i­dence sug­gests it is not all doom and gloom. There­fore, as a home owner what can you do to make sure you ben­e­fit from what ap­pears to be sig­nif­i­cant pent up in­tent on the part of both buy­ers and sell­ers alike?

Price is, of course, the ob­vi­ous and prob­a­bly most im­por­tant fac­tor. There is no point in quot­ing a price if it bears no re­sem­blance to sim­i­lar houses in the area that may have re­cently sold. A val­uer for mort­gage pur­poses will cer­tainly have re­gard to this ev­i­dence which will be read­ily avail­able on line. But you can’t ar­gue the same point both ways, in which case when buy­ers make an of­fer, rather than think­ing there must be an au­to­matic dis­count, they should have re­gard to the same ev­i­dence if they want some form of as­sur­ance or peace of mind to the of­fer they are mak­ing.

When a house is per­haps a lit­tle more in­di­vid­ual, it is per­fectly rea­son­able that an owner might think their house is a lit­tle spe­cial and there­fore jus­ti­fies a pre­mium price. There is en­cour­ag­ing ev­i­dence that where buy­ers recog­nise a prop­erty as be­ing “bet­ter than the norm” they are pre­pared to pay for the priv­i­lege of own­er­ship. For­tu­nately, the sense of re­al­ism I men­tioned ear­lier does seem to sug­gest that buy­ers are not sim­ply look­ing at home own­er­ship as a mon­ey­mak­ing ex­er­cise, it is now much more a ques­tion of buy­ing a home to live in.

So what I am ad­vo­cat­ing is re­al­ism on the part of buy­ers and sell­ers alike. As was men­tioned to me ear­lier this week, surely in the cur­rent cli­mate, mov­ing house is like buy­ing a car, only a lit­tle more ex­pen­sive. It is the cost to move, and for most of us this means main­tain­ing the same dif­fer­en­tial be­tween your sale price and your pur­chase price. How­ever, for some, maybe the re­al­ism of the cur­rent mar­ket is ac­cept­ing that the dream house you re­ally wanted is not af­ford­able. So per­haps if you want to move, you should lower your as­pi­ra­tions and buy some­thing that might be a lit­tle cheaper, but it could well be equally en­tic­ing and prove to be lovely home in years to come.

Re­al­ism also re­lates to ac­knowl­edg­ing both the ad­van­tages and per­haps dis­ad­van­tages of a prop­erty that you might be look­ing to sell, or in­deed pur­chase. If it is near a busy road, but in the catch­ment area for a par­tic­u­lar school, if you are sell­ing, price ac­cord­ingly. Re­flect the fact that the road is there but you are per­fectly en­ti­tled to quote a price be­cause of the school. If you are buy­ing, re­mem­ber both is­sues. Again, it is all a ques­tion of be­ing re­al­is­tic, and if this con­tin­ues then I gen­uinely think the York­shire res­i­den­tial prop­erty mar­ket could prove to be very ac­tive over the next six months.

Tim War­ing is a part­ner in Knight Frank and heads their es­tate agency team in York­shire.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.