Market Comment – March 2018

Gary 4x3I have read some pretty gloomy reports about the housing market at the end of March and the word subdued seems to crop up time and time again.

I have to say, it might be subdued for the reactive Estate Agents, but for the Proactive Estate Agent, it is my opinion that their market share is growing, and this was highlighted to me most noticeably on one Thursday evening late in March, when the manager of our Central Croydon Office, 263 High Street, Croydon, sent me a photograph of nine offer sheets representing nine offers that his office had in that day. He is clearly not experiencing a subdued market.

I absolutely get that the public whether you are a buyer or seller, tenant or landlord, are probably more baffled and completely fed up with the Brexit subject and this may have dwarfed any uncertainty and whilst in my market comment I have always tried to shy away from politics, I am safe in my comment after reading the other day that between 8 and 9 people out of ten were dis-satisfied by the way that Brexit has been handled.

Enough about politics, and there are rays of sunshine amongst the gloom mongers; house prices were up 2.6% for the first three months of this year compared to the same period in 2018, new ten year rates were launched to the by to let investor at 2.74% and in my 30+ years this seems like unbelievably cheap money to borrow for an investor, and help to buy goes from strength to strength.

Turning to our individual figures, prospective purchasers registered in March was virtually exactly the same as February and prospective tenants looking to rent was up 3% and there was a marked increase. I shall report back to you further on help to buy enquiries.

So all be it a little shorter then my usual market comment, I wanted to re-assure anyone thinking of buying or selling that is most definitely not all doom and gloom and I would rather than use the word “subdued” time and time again. I am confident in stating that there is a healthy appetite to buy, a healthy appetite for lenders to lend and the residential letting market remains as solid as ever. This all coupled together with the help to buy demand and supply going from strength to strength.

I look forward to reporting back to you in May, on what I think will be a healthy April housing market.