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UK Property Sales Market Update

Winkworth take a look at how the property sales market has fared around the UK so far in 2018 post Brexit, general elections & SDLT changes

While the UK property sales market has had a turbulent few years with Brexit, elections, SDLT increases and, as a result, general uncertainty, it would appear that things are now beginning to stabilise, and we are seeing a return to a more ‘normal’ market. Stock levels are high although applicant levels are, at this stage, generally lower than they were in 2017.

‘This year has seen more traditional trends resurface, with the first uninterrupted spring selling season for three years.’ says Dominic Agace, CEO of Winkworth. ‘As normality has returned to the market, activity has continued to grow in Central London. Increased realism around pricing has also started to offset the tax burden of the additional Stamp Duty that was introduced in the autumn of 2014, which dampened activity. Across our markets, we have seen that where prices have been adjusted downwards, activity has picked up as affordability subsequently improves.’

The Rightmove House Price Index for May 2018 shows that asking prices are up by 1.1% annually. The current average asking price of a UK property stands at £308,075. However, house prices are rising much more slowly than before the 2016 referendum decision to take Britain out of the European Union, which hit consumer confidence and spending. As a result, the variance in regions across the country is dramatic. Market activity has indeed weakened across the country, but strong price growth continues for many areas. In Hove, for example, the market remains strong; ‘Asking prices are still increasing, albeit very slightly, and achieved prices are remaining positive; within 94% of the asking price,’ says Toby Powell, Director of Brighton and Hove. As we see interest rates increase, mortgage payments will also rise (though slowly) and this will put pressure on many households. However, recent falls in inflation have led to real wage rises for the first time in a year.

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‘The market is relatively buoyant for us. There is still demand and we have found that our level of instructions have grown. There are plenty of landlords offloading stock, probably due to the increased legislation and removal of mortgage interest offset against income tax,’ comments James Hathaway, Director of Winkworth Reading. ‘Prices are more competitive and have probably shifted negatively up to around 5% this year, but demand is similar and stock has increased.’

Overall, 24 London boroughs have seen sale prices fall over the year, and nine have seen them rise. Perhaps surprisingly, Kensington and Chelsea properties are beginning to rise in value again, having suffered the greatest price drops of recent years. With a significant increase in the number of properties for sale across the capital, up 16.4% in the last year, buyers now have far more choice, with the average London home now taking 67 days to sell.

To the south east of London, the outlook is similarly positive, albeit due to different factors. ‘New buyers registering this year are down 15% on 2017 levels, although sales volume and viewing levels are up 15% on 2017. Demand for 3 and 4 bedroom family homes has been very strong, particularly in the £500k-£1m bracket, with prices in some instances slightly on the increase. There has also been more activity and positive pricing achieved on the few homes that have been listed on the market to £2-£3m’, says Steve Brown, Branch Manager of Winkworth Blackheath.

On the other side of London, Shepherds Bush is also experiencing a more buoyant market. Applicant levels are down here also, but the buyers who are looking are serious and taking advantage of the good range of properties available. ‘Demand for flats is down as many landlords are leaving the Buy-to-Let market and that is causing a temporary over supply – particularly in the two bad sectors. However, family houses are holding up well, with many almost achieving close to what they would have in the previous peak of 2015. Pricing is, of course, key as buyers have plenty of choice, but well presented homes offered at the correct price are selling’ says Simon Waller, Branch Manager of Winkworth Shepherds Bush & Acton.

We look at some properties currently for sale...

Macfarlane Road, London, W12 - £1,450,000 Freehold

Macfarlane Road, London, W12 - £1,450,000 Freehold
Macfarlane Road, London, W12 - £1,450,000 Freehold

This well presented and grand Victorian property is in centrally located, offering easy access to Shepherds Bush’s underground stations as well as Westfield. The house benefits from a tremendous amount of natural light, due to its large windows and roof light in the extension. The trees and plants in the patio garden more than make up for its lack of size, as they offer a slice of tranquillity on a quiet road surrounded by a busy and vibrant Shepherds Bush.

For more information please contact Winkworth Shepherds Bush and Acton or call 020 8735 3266.

Langton Way, Blackheath, SE3 - £1,399,999 Freehold

Langton Way, Blackheath, SE3 - £1,399,999 Freehold
Langton Way, Blackheath, SE3 - £1,399,999 Freehold

With a well presented landscape garden on a sought after private road, this large and unique property on Langton Way offers good value in terms of size and location. The wealth of outdoor space within a gated layout affords both freedom of movement and privacy at the same time. The large south facing rear garden features a tiled patio leading to beautifully presented landscaping and greenery – all overlooked by a sizeable balcony on the self contained studio apartment on the first floor.

For more information please contact Winkworth Blackheath or call 020 8852 0999.

Dyke Road Avenue, East Sussex, BN3 - £1,500,000 Freehold

This grand family home situated on the prestigious Dyke Road Avenue offers an abundance of space that is sure to impress any potential buyers. Boasting two conservatories that lead on to the stunning mature rear garden, this six-bedroom house is ideally located for any family – with excellent schools and local parks easily accessible.

For more information please contact Winkworth Brighton and Hove or call 01273 772 175.

Merrifield Close, Reading, RG6 - £535,000 Freehold

Merrifield Close, Reading, RG6 - £535,000 Freehold

The impressive hedged off rear garden in this property is sure to be one of the main attractions for families wishing to purchase a home in this quiet neighbourhood of Lower Earley. Its simple yet attractive interior almost offers a blank canvas for any potential buyer, with four bedrooms and a modern kitchen and dining room that overlooks the landscaped garden. If the current space is not adequate, there is also room to extend but to the rear and side of the property, subject to the usual planning requirements.

For more information please contact Winkworth Reading or call 0118 4022300.

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