We can all safely agree that it’s been an interesting time for the property market over the last 18 months, but, with so much activity, headline news and incentivisation during that time, where are we actually at right now? And…where are we headed?
Well, the fact remains that it’s very much still a seller’s market. But… what does that actually mean? What exactly is a seller’s market? And while we’re at it what about all of the other things we’ve been hearing in the news recently
In this article we’re going to breakdown these burning questions and bust some media myths to give you the facts on what the market looks like
So, let’s jump in…
1. What IS a seller’s market?
A seller’s market quite simply means that there is more demand for homes in the market than there is supply. This puts sellers in a strong position because asking prices increase and houses sell more quickly.
2. Is it still a seller’s market right now?
Absolutely. Predictions of an expected crash this year have all been proved wrong with the market looking very strong right now. For example, last month Right Move reported record highs in the price of property coming to market in the mass-market sectors. Plus, for the first week in August they saw demand stats soar 56% higher than they were for the same period in 2019, before the pandemic.
Nationwide have also reported that the average UK house price in August is 11% higher than last year AND that property prices have recorded their second largest month-on-month rise in 15 years.
So, when we say it’s a seller’s market, we don’t just say that anecdotally – the numbers really do speak for themselves.
3. What about the stamp duty holiday coming to an end?
Despite popular belief, the latest trends and reports are clearly indicating that the stamp duty holiday was not the cause of the market boom. According to many sources, including the BBC, there were (and are) much more influential factors at play causing the ongoing boost.
Quoting The Resolution Foundation's Housing Outlook report, the BBC picks out, ‘enforced savings during lockdowns, changing housing preferences and super-low interest rates’ as the real factors driving the increased activity in the market.
With market activity still very high, and the stamp duty holiday no longer in play, it’s now become clear that the stamp duty holiday was not the driving force.
4. So why did the headlines report property dips in the summer?
Most property experts are echoing the same message - that while there was an initial, slight dip at the beginning of the summer, really this was just a temporary distraction. The main factor behind this was the same factor that affects the market in this way every year – summer holidays. A slight pause for the market in the summer is absolutely nothing new, and certainly not indicative of any kind of overall market crash – contrary to what some media outlets speculated.
Every year the market undergoes a slight slow-down as buyers and sellers temporarily pause to take time off with family or get away. This year also saw additional factors contributing to the distraction, namely the Euros taking place and the fact that a lot of Covid-related travel restrictions had just been lifted.
But, just as the stats above show, the slight dip was simply a very temporary pause and the market is extremely busy again with very strong buyer demand. Right Move
are forecasting a busy Autumn period and have highlighted that this could give buyers coming to market a strong incentive to “sell before you buy” to help secure their next home.
5. How does the current mood feel?
The current mood is great. It’s positive, it’s opportunistic and it’s proactive. We can so clearly see that the sentiment has changed since Covid. Both sellers and buyers are much more open to change. The pandemic has really made everyone reassess what they want – from their lives, from their work and from their homes. Lifestyle seems so much more important now and we can understand why.
What we’ve been noticing is that in prioritising lifestyle, sellers and buyers are embracing change and really making opportunities happen. Some people have been able to save during the pandemic, others have achieved a better sense of job security now that we’re the other side of lockdown measures. So, there’s a real spring to action at the moment, indicating a busy, productive Autumn for all. As for investors, they’ve realised that the media-speculated crash isn’t coming anytime soon and there’s no reason to delay their property ambitions
6. So if I’m a buyer, what do I do about the competition?
Because we’re experiencing a seller’s market, you might have some reservations about the competition when it comes to buying your next home. But don’t worry. Great matches are being made every day between sellers and buyers, and there are lots of things you can do to put yourself in a strong buyer position for your prospective sellers.
Tips for buyers
- ✓ Have a mortgage in principle that you can evidence at viewings
- ✓ Have your proof of funds too
- ✓ Choose your solicitor in advance so that you’re ready to go
- ✓ Make sure your solicitor is experienced and reputable
All of the above will give you an edge over the competition by demonstrating to prospective sellers that you are a serious, organised buyer. We can’t stress enough the importance of appointing a reputable solicitor to handle your conveyancing. We’ve witnessed first-hand how poorly-qualified conveyancers have actually hindered sales rather than progress them. So do consider your choices carefully.
The market is booming – spot your opportunity
So, if you’re thinking of moving home, there’s going to be lots of opportunity this Autumn to make your dream move happen. We have plenty of buyers waiting to view new properties coming to market.
Experience your Best Move
Get in touch to learn more about selling with Follwells. We’re here to help answer any questions you may have.