December and Time for Buyers to Negotiate Hard?
Homes are now taking average of over 12 weeks to reach the sale agreed stage with prices nearly 4% below asking price - equating to an average drop of nearly £10,000 – but figures released by Zoopla at the beginning of November reported a mixed recent regional picture with homes in the Midlands and North taking between 8 and 10 weeks to go under offer.
With discounts of between 2% and 3%, central London homes are taking less than 20 weeks to sell thanks to sale prices at £50,000 less than originally asked.
November saw the longest period for three years that homes have taken to go under offer - nearly a month longer than at the same time in 2016.
Many would blame Brexit and the recent election for creating more uncertainty than usual but it would do little to address the issue of housing affordability in the South says Richard MacDonald at Zoopla.
He says “market conditions are set to remain weak in the southern cities until pricing levels adjust to what buyers are willing or able to afford.”
Jonathan Rolande of Professional Property Buying company, House Buy Fast comments “at the moment house prices are being propped up by the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ and very low interest rates which mean that even high property prices are more affordable for many buyers, with deposits being provided by parents looking to both assist their children in buying a home and also to find somewhere to keep their savings as savings interest is so low.”
So What Is in Store in 2020?
“Things are still far from certain” says Jonathan “but as long as interest rates remain low we are unlikely to see any great downturn in prices during this year. The recent election result has helped some confidence to return to the market and this should remain for much of the year but everything depends on interest rates remaining at the current level or thereabouts.”
And for those who can’t find a buyer, or worse still, can’t find a buyer who actually keeps their word and exchanges contracts?
Well there are always Professional Home Buying firms such as House Buy Fast who are aiming to increase the number of properties they purchase yet again in 2020 securing their position as one of the UK’s top cash buying firms.