THE WORD with Tom Floyd, Sales Manager at Winkworth Kennington who looks back at the last 12 months and has some predictions for the year ahead.
It is eight months since I last wrote ‘The Word’ and I am pleased that my predictions back then were correct. I mentioned that our market was being held up by 25-35 year old buyers, which is still very much the case in this area. The cash from the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ is helping with a deposit and the continued low interest rates are making buying/borrowing easier.
Our market ranges from studio flats for £300,000, to large family houses in Stockwell for £2,800,000. Last year I looked in detail at, who our buyers were, and I was amazed with the results. 67.6% of our buyers were under the age of 36 and 56.34% were first time buyers. Considering that just under £800,000 was the average price of property we sold last year, those figures are astonishing. In addition, less than 3% of our buyers were investors, which means we are really dealing with buyers that need to buy.
We have also noticed that couples, in their early to mid 30s, are trying to buy for the long term and are therefore making plans for the next 10-15+ years, rather 5-10 years. This means the market for large houses in the area is very good and the values are holding.
Looking forward I can see much of the same in 2018. I cannot see drastic changes in capital values and the continued resilience of the first-time buyer market should keep the overall market going.
Unfortunately, all of this doesn’t mean that vendors can now be over optimistic on price. It is still a very price sensitive market and if properties are on for too much, they won’t even get viewings, let alone offers. It is important that vendors put their property on for a realistic price and that they make sure it shows in its best possible light. So, if that means decluttering and decorating, I would strongly advise doing that.
Nearly 20% of our instructions last year were properties that had been on with another agent for too much. As a result a lot of vendors lost out on their onward purchase and it also, later, affected the marketing of their property
Please make sure that if you are looking to market your property in the next few months, you choose an agent that has good track record in the area and always ask them to justify their valuation, so you don’t fall into the trap of marketing for too much.