Friday, 22 September 2017

Autumn boom time for new homebuyers

Autumn is usually boom time for house prices. Homebuyers have put the summer holidays behind them. Christmas is far enough off that most people are not (yet) worrying about paying for the festive season. Demand for new homes is at its highest and price activity normally gets a boost.

Well, that's what normally happens. But 2017, it seems, is not going to be normal.

This year, the usual Autumn price bounce has so far failed to materialise. In fact, there has been a fall of -1.2 per cent (-£3,660) in the price of property coming to market - the first since 2013.

Rightmove director and housing market analyst Miles Shipside said: “As we enter the Autumn selling season it is usual to see estate agents advising new-to-the-market sellers to push up their asking prices.

“But this year all four southern regions have seen new sellers on average asking less than those of a month ago, reducing the national rate of increase. There were Autumn price bounces nationally in 2014, 2015 and 2016, but the south of the country has turned this month into a bit of a damp squib, whilst some northern regions are still showing marginal signs of upwards price pressure.

“Estate agents are clearly advising many sellers that they have to lower their price expectations to fit in with buyers' stretched financial resources, with that price compromise hopefully generating extra buyer interest.”

Annual average wage growth is now outstripping the annual rate of price increase in newly-marketed property. Average wage rises are now running at nearly double the annual rate of property price rises, and the longer any meaningful differential is maintained then the greater the improvement in affordability. Having finally turned the tables to potentially improve their buying power, buyers will now be hoping that it is not eroded again by an interest rate rise or rampant consumer price inflation.

Affordability is still a major factor in the slowing pace of price rises but demand for the right housing at the right price remains strong. The numbers of sales being agreed by estate agents are 4.8 per cent higher than the same period a year ago.

The housing needs of growing families are harder to postpone than other more discretionary moves. This has resulted in average asking prices for typical second-stepper type homes increasing at over twice the overall national average rate.

With competition among lenders to lend, increasing wages and the lowest level of unemployment since 1975, buyers are still keen to buy if the property is worth the money and well-presented.
If more sellers appreciate that sensible pricing is the best way forward, then this will help to maintain good levels of buyer activity despite the uncertain political outlook.

There is a wide choice of well-priced homes in Larkfleet Homes developments in locations around the country. If you’re looking for a new home it’s time to take advantage of the upturn in affordability. Call Larkfleet Homes today. We’re here to help you make your next move up the property ladder.

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