Tony Filice, Director
At the present time, we are pleased to note that Kelvin Francis are the market leaders with 19.1 per cent of the market share in North Cardiff for properties for sale and under offer. We believe that because we use the best professional photography, drone photography in some cases, we always add floor plans to listings, and video tours, this enhances the viewer’s experience before physically viewing the property.
Qualifying viewers is especially important now during the pandemic period, to ensure viewers have a feel for the property, before they physically view, under the Government COVID-19 Guidelines. Prices are being pushed up by partly the temporary Land Transaction Tax relief (£250,000 in Wales) combined with the release of pent-up demand, shortage of supply, the desire to improve home life living surroundings, following the three lockdown experiences. The new ‘wish list requirements’ of a home office and larger garden spaces, now that working from home has increased and perhaps will become more common in the future.
Record number of viewings
In Cardiff, we are experiencing a record number of viewings, offers and instructions to sell. Over 60 per cent of our purchasers come from outside the Cardiff area. Interesting to note that a high number of buyers are coming from the Bristol area, relocating to Cardiff, where homes offer better value for money and a safe family environment, bearing in mind that Cardiff is rated as one of the most desirable cities in the UK, to reside.
With the COVID-19 vaccine in place, this will assist the retired to take steps to consider selling and downsizing, therefore we anticipate the Spring/Summer market to continue with confidence and a strong activity.
Pictured property: 19 Llwyn Y Grant Road, Cardiff – £1,150,000
Mark Willson, Managing Director
H Tiddy has been established for over 100 years and we are recognised specialists in a niche market. We cover an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in South Cornwall called The Roseland Peninsula, which includes the exclusive coastal village of St Mawes.
During the first lockdown, the decision of the directors at H Tiddy was to not furlough any of the team. Our files, photos, videos etc were already stored digitally. We were lucky that in 2019 we created a new interactive website which links to our cloud-based software system. We were able to stay interactively connected to each other and our clients. We devised new ways to remotely view and value property whilst isolating and we re-opened our office again, with a stringent ‘back to work’ COVID-19 policy in force on Thursday 14th May.
Busy in lockdown
During the summer period, up to the second lockdown on 31st October, we went through an exceptionally busy trading period. In August, we expanded our team with the addition of Harriette Thompson as a sales negotiator. Everyone was working extremely long hours to cope with buyer enquiries. This was aided by a strong supply of property listings in all price ranges becoming available on our books. Many of our properties did not see the open market and most underwent competitive bidding, with prices achieving well in excess of the original marketing price.
Given the horrible and devasting circumstances, it is surreal to announce that 2020 was our best ever year on record. We exchanged contracts on over £49m pounds-worth of property.
Many of our vendors brought their plans forward in 2020 to take advantage of pent-up buyer demand, which has now led to a current short-term listings shortage. The local housing market at the start of 2021 is remaining strong and we are seeing continually increasing numbers of enquiries from buyers wishing to purchase their dream home in Cornwall.
Pictured property: St Mawes, Cornwall – Guide price of £950,000
Lisa Hunt, Residential Director
Founded in 2004, Maguire Jackson has become well known for its focus on Birmingham City Centre. The first six weeks of the new year has shown an increasing level of confidence from buyers and an acknowledgement from many vendors to negotiate, having made the decision to move, helped by the Stamp Duty holiday deadline. For a buyer with over £500k this can mean a tax saving over £15,000. Even looking beyond this date many potential buyers are making plans to absorb the duty with a confidence now being helped by the vaccine roll out, which is suggesting that a level of normal business reality will shortly be restored.
Within the City the demand continues from first time buyers alongside increasingly up-sizers looking for an improved location, more accommodation or more facilities.
Expanding city population
For those, especially without children, Birmingham City Centre as a location has enormous advantages with so much within easy reach. The transport hubs and the easy access to the international airport are all attractive. The open spaces around the canals and the green space of the Jewellery Quarters and restored cemeteries are inviting, but perhaps not for everyone! Quality core City Centre schools also do not exist unlike many other UK cities, such as Bristol, reflecting Birmingham’s relative recent rediscovery of City Centre living. Symphony Court, built in the mid-Nineties, starting with the 143 canal side flats, led today’s expanding urban population.
We see an active Spring ahead with many new and smaller blocks securing buyers away from those larger buildings currently temporarily held from the market as they await their EWS1 fire certificates, which are vital for borrowing. For vendors who can sell, it means the correct pricing and for landlords it means presentation plus market guidance. The audience for sales and lettings is becoming more discerning, helped by choice and increasing knowledge.
Pictured property: Canal-fronted apartments, Jewellery Quarter, Birmingham City Centre – from £525,000.