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Regional report

Each month we visit three agents across the country to discover what is happening in their local market. This month we meet members of The Guild of Property Professionals in Somerset, Manchester and Salisbury.

The Negotiator
SOMERSET
Somerset property image

STATS: Overall average house price in South West: £341,354 Average time to sell a property in the South West: 38 days Annual property price growth in South West: 13.6%

 

WEBBERS PROPERTY SERVICES LTD
Malcolm Prescott, Managing Director

Whilst we have seen the fourth interest rate rise in as many months, homeowners can be rest assured that the continued demand for properties, should still see house prices hold strong in the coming year.

Naturally the latest increase will have many homeowners and indeed prospective buyers, concerned, about the impact that this may have on their personal finances. People on “tracker” or variable rate mortgages may of course face a further squeeze on their cost of living as payments increase – whilst those on fixed rate mortgages are presently unaffected.

The advice has to be to keep a close eye on when mortgage deals are set to renew – this is the time to be ready to make the very best of any new products that are available, with this in-mind planning is crucial – don’t wait start speaking to your advisors now.

Intense demand

The demand for properties across all sectors remains intense and the continued relatively low number of new instructions essentially means that prices are holding up and most commentators suggest that the residential housing market will ride-out any short-term issues in the economy.

Here in the South West we continue to see continued demand for all types of property, from coastal properties, new builds, family homes and country properties with land – all are in demand. We are extremely pleased to see such strength from local buyers too, we are the selling agent for the exciting new scheme in Cornwall, ‘West Carclaze Garden Village’ and the majority of buyers for these super new homes are from within the local area.

May and June are traditionally two of the busiest months of the year for property sales in the South West and so far there has been no let up, it is clear that this area is still one of the very best places to live, bring up a family and find the work/life balance, that so many of us are seeking in the light of such difficult times during the pandemic.

Featured property: Taunton, Somerset – £330,000

MANCHESTER
Manchester property image

STATS: Average price of a three-bed semi: £300,000 Properties selling for between 4 to 5% over asking price On average a property goes under offer: every week

 

Victoria Keavney imageKEAVNEY ESTATES
Victoria Keavney, Managing Director

Since the pandemic, Worsley, Manchester and M28, has landed itself on the map. As a pandemic start-up business here at Keavney Estates we have seen a huge demand for the area, we have worked in the M28 and Worsley area for the last 12 years plus under a different name, but regardless we have noticed an upsurge and demand for big houses with bigger gardens and those houses are expected to do so much more now that some are still required to work from home. The current ‘race for space’ is still happening considering that we are now out of lockdown. We wonder what has happened and why the market is still driving upwards. Our current conclusion and experience is that overseas buyers are competing for local property for their own gains. The buy-to-let market is crazy busy, and rentals have become even more in demand. With all this in mind, it’s no wonder why Worsley and M28 and its surrounding areas are reaching sale prices that are unprecedented like many parts of Salford and Manchester.

Sales without viewings

At Keavney Estates we specialise in residential sales, new builds and lettings and both market areas are keen movers in this area. Sales are hitting market and typically going under offer within the first day of viewings and rentals are secured virtually immediately with people wanting to secure a property without even viewing. Rental prices used to be negotiable and now they are highly competitive with several applications per property. Average house prices are around £300,000k for a three-bed semi; properties on the market for sale are in the main taking over the asking price by 4 to 5% minimum. One property sold in 2021 with 6.4% offered over the asking price. On average a property goes under offer every week with some weeks seeing two to three properties securing offers.

We work with our vendors to try and keep the market local for local buyers, families who want to live close to relatives and people wanting to break away from apartment living after lockdown. So, while we still have instructions there is no sign of the market slowing down and we are kept busier than ever juggling the expectations of vendors and purchasers alike.

Featured property: Worsley – On the market for £265,000, sold for £278,000

SALISBURY
Salisbury property image

STATS: Viewings booked within the first 24 hours of listing a property: 8 to 10 Sales per month: 15 to 20 Sales properties that have not reached guide price or above this year: 2

 

Tony Williams imageWHITES ESTATE AGENTS
Tony Williams, Head of Sales

We are a market leading one office branch in the small city of Salisbury. We handle property with a value up to a million but most of our stock would be lower/middle market. Just for comparison, studio flats are circa £125,000, three-bed semis start at £325,000, and four-bed detached start at £450,000. Our world has gone crazy for both sales and lettings and in 43 years as an agent, I have never seen anything quite like it. On the sales side we thought that last year was frantic with the abolition of stamp duty and price rises of 15% but this year has moved up another level. As for lettings, pretty much the same. On sales we list a new property and get eight to ten viewings booked within the first 24 hours. With lettings it’s 20 and multiple applications overnight. Only two sales properties have not reached guide price or above this year and no lettings have gone for less than advertised. We arrange between 15 and 20 sales per month.

Supply and demand

As with all housing markets there are many factors that come in to play, but for us it is a simple matter of supply and demand. We have literally hundreds of buyers moving into our area, as well as a considerable number of locals. Couple this with less than half normal stock levels, there is a massive imbalance. Interestingly there is a split of locals to non-locals. Most locals buy up to £500,000, non-locals above. Agents are increasingly overvaluing to win instructions…and they still sell! Nine out of 10 properties go to best and final offers with between three and eight bidders and typically at 10% more than guide price. In the four months of the year so far, we estimate prices have already risen by 7%. The problem with non-locals is they simply don’t know what local values should be, so don’t mind paying top prices.

I keep hearing that there is a crash coming, but in this area, I just don’t see that happening. The real question is where are all the buyers coming from? At the risk of being political…too many people live in the UK now. Hence demand will stay strong.

Featured property: Edge of Salisbury SSTC +10% over guide

July 22, 2022

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