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3rd December 2019

Market coment – November 2019

November can best be described as a solid and stable month for the sales market across our group, from Coulsdon to Crystal Palace.

The number of houses that we agreed sales on were marginally up on November 2018 and it was refreshing to see that just over 85% of the offers that were accepted were at the asking price or over.

I note that prices across the UK rose by 0.8 percent to late November according to Nationwide, which was a slight pick up on the previous month, with the average UK home costing £215,734 and I concur with Robert Gardener Nationwide’s chief economist that “Rightly or wrongly, for most home buyers, elections are not foremost in their minds while buying or selling their home.” To summarise this, whilst the scaremongers talk about economic uncertainty, Brexit and the general election next week, throughout this year I have not seen a wait appetite, in fact, the opposite with help to buy and the housing market in the areas we operate in.

On the 19th November, I was pleased to take my team to the develop Croydon conference, this being the 10th year running and to hear all the exciting regeneration plans for Croydon clearly will result in complete regeneration of the Purley Way which is imminent. Croydon is leading the way and a lot of investment is going in to new tech start-up firms. The councillor Tony Newman and Croydons chief executive Jo Negrini’s opening speech was full of optimism for Croydon and not just for the amount of new homes being built but clearly all the surrounding infrastructure to include schools, recreational facilities and transport which is all under review to support new housing.

On a personal note, it reminded me how some years ago Croydon was viewed as one of the most creative and busiest retail areas outside London and that regeneration after some years is happening here to stay. It is obvious to see why the rest of the UK and indeed global purchasers are interested in the Croydon market.

Two pleasant surprises in November were the amount of new tenants we moved into homes, which was a November record for Streets Ahead and also Land & New homes goes from strength to strength and we are on the verge of launching six exciting new developments in the next 4 weeks. An example of this was Westbrook Road whereby we had a soft launch of 6 houses last week and already 50% have been reserved and after speaking to our New Homes manager Patrick Donnelly, he fully expects the whole of the development to be sold (subject to contract) by the end of the month.

As we all reflect over the past year with the housing market, I think it is a story of success in that there has been plenty of negative propaganda in the media and as I have mentioned yet the appetite remains strong and solid and I can see no evidence or reason why that wouldn’t spill over in to 2020.

Which only leads me to wish all our customers, past, present and future a very happy Christmas and I look forward to reporting back to you early in 2020.

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