Keeping buyers and sellers on same track in rising market
WITH recovery of the UK residential property market extensively reported in the media by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), amongst others, it is inevitable that both buyers and sellers are contemplating the future.
My biggest fear for the residential property market is the potential for a “disconnect” between buyers and sellers in what is widely now acknowledged as an improving market place across Yorkshire.
Understandably, sellers wish to maximise their price and are starting to harden their position with some having now convinced themselves that prices will be higher next spring.
A recent example I experienced was an owner wanting to increase their price after the first viewer made an offer at the guide price.
My worry is that if this thinking becomes widespread, sales will stall. Some buyers are still expecting heavy discounts because “they have the cash”. Ironically, on the same day as the previous example, we had an inquiry from a potential purchaser, on a house that had only been on the market for 10 days asking “is the buyer likely to accept a significantly reduced price for a quick deal?”
Both positions are very understandable and something I am particularly aware of given I am selling my own house at the moment.
Evidence over the last couple of months would appear to suggest that the majority of buyers and sellers are heeding the advice by accepting or paying the market price in summer 2013 and not speculating on what could happen next year.
It is encouraging that some sales are taking place in competitive circumstances with more than one buyer chasing the same house. Whilst not of our making I hasten to add, we have even had a case of gazumping recently which many probably thought was a terminology that had disappeared from the estate agent dictionary.
Activity levels, particularly in the mainstream urban marketplace, are presently the most encouraging for many months and this is starting to spread into country locations, particularly those that offer convenience for the commuter.
The latest research from Knight Frank’s Harrogate office shows a continuing upward trend of our sales to buyers moving into the area from out of Yorkshire.
Between July 2012 and June 2013, the percentage increased to 40 and this compares with 38 per cent in the calendar year 2012, 36 in 2011 and 33 in 2010. I do not propose to reiterate my view as to the reasons for such statistics, other than to say the region’s improving infrastructure is a major factor in this regard.
Some readers have previously mentioned to me that perhaps I have become an ambassador for Welcome to Yorkshire as I extol the virtues of the region.
So it is against a background of increasing confidence and increasing sales that Knight Frank will use the traditional start of the autumn selling season in September to launch a raft of new instructions under the unique banner of “Secret Saturday”. Estate agents are always seeking to explore new sales initiatives to generate interest from buyers with “Secret Saturday” perhaps one of the most innovative of late.
We intend to launch these new instructions on September 14, and all are properties that have not previously been offered to the open market. Some are only being offered for a fixed two-week period in the hope that both buyers and sellers can be matched at an appropriate price without the attendant costs associated with formal marketing. So when we have all enjoyed our summer holidays, the children are back at school, and you are thinking of buying, or indeed selling this autumn, let us know in advance,because we might have some interesting new instructions to tell you about.