The North-East of England is set for a major COVID bounceback boost through the development of brownfield sites, according to estate agency GSC Grays.
The firm, which has branches across the North has seen encouraging results that it believes signal the market may be recovering better than elsewhere.
GSC Grays has seen the number of sales agreed increase by 41% compared with the same period last year, with new instructions up 32% and the number of people seeking valuations up by 35%.
The company says the market will be further buoyed by the recent government announcement about the acquisition of brownfield land to develop much needed housing.
However, on the downside, GSC Grays reports the amount of properties being taken off the market as being five times higher than this time last year, while the number of agreed deals falling through has increasing by 11%.
GSC Grays director Calum Gillhespy said: “As part of the Prime Minister’s announcement on 30 June to encourage activity in the construction sector, a £400m Brownfield Land Fund has been announced to cover a number of regions across the country, which includes the North of Tyne and Tees Valley.
“The plan is to encourage the construction of 24,000 new homes and with an announcement that planning [rules] for redevelopment schemes will be substantially eased, this could make a significant contribution to some parts of the region.”
He said it was too soon to tell whether the current recovery was caused by pent-up demand, coupled with those looking to escape the city.
But he added: “Recent reports on activity in the housing market show that the North-East has seen the strongest bounceback in the country. If we are able to maintain this and then combine it with some of these measures, we could see a real difference in parts of the region.”