This is a question we are continually asked which is not entirely unexpected as we are property people. But it is not just those actively involved in buying or selling who ask the question. It is friends, acquaintances, even family, as the state of the housing market is so well established as a barometer on what is going on in the wider world.
And our answer? “A curate’s egg” is an expression we don’t hear much these days but is generally well understood. Partly ok and partly not so good.
It probably doesn’t come as a surprise to many that prices are not rising. The continued procrastination by our politicians on Brexit has put paid to that and, unfortunately there is no end date yet. This has meant that many house buyers and sellers (as one tends to be the other as well) are sitting tight and not thinking about a move.
For some properties, prices are falling. This has become most noticeable for those in the residential estates, in homes which are competing directly with the new housing developments being built, particularly in Faringdon but also, locally, Shrivenham and Stanford in the Vale. With buyers for new homes being able to benefit from the 20% Help to Buy it is not hard to see why this is happening.
If you live in one of our outlying villages, or have a period/character property, have views, or particular features which can differentiate you from others, then so long as your pricing is right, you will enjoy good interest from buyers. Don’t expect to sell at the first viewing but expect to be getting offers within 6 – 8 weeks, sometimes sooner.
For those wanting to move from the more suburban areas, it is about focussing on the positives. Yes, the price has to be competitive but buying is not just about the head (money) but also the heart (emotion). Highlight all the great things about where you live and make sure your home is presented in the best way possible.
It is in the current market conditions when professional advice from those who understand the market best, is needed the most. So, whilst the market isn’t great there is plenty of life in it and plenty of opportunities for those who are willing to be realistic on figures.
Jenny Preece MRICS
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