There’s no place like home
Whether you’re a first time buyer, considering renting your next property or are looking to purchase a second home, it’s key to keep an eye on the housing market. With the uncertainty of Brexit, it has felt like the market has been in limbo for some time. We’re now starting to see a more traditional market that is influenced by seasonal trends, with the usual spring upturn well underway.
Although we can’t be certain of what will happen, we can use the latest research, historical data and our knowledge of the industry to see what the future has in store. Looking ahead to the rest of the year, there are a few things that buyers and renters should be aware of.
Property prices, both for homebuyers and those who are looking to rent, look set to continue to rise. Whilst this won’t be music to everyone’s ears, we think the prices will rise at a slower rate than we’ve seen in recent years.
Last year, the properties we put on the market attracted lots of viewings, and were snapped up, sometimes at figures above the asking price, within weeks – even days – of them going on the market. Things have slowed a little and buyers are spending more time considering different properties before putting in an offer, but the competition is still strong.
What does this mean for buyers?
Recent research from Halifax shows that deposits have almost doubled in the last decade, with first-time buyers having to raise £32,000, on average, to secure their first home.
Whether you’re a first time buyer or are moving on to your next home, the good news is that interest rates are at a historical low. This means that if you need a mortgage to enable you to purchase your property – and let’s face it, that’s most of us – now is a good time to buy due to the low interest rate. Securing a fixed rate mortgage will allow you to take advantage of fixed payments for a set amount of time.
Whilst prices are rising, and the market has slowed slightly, the demand for properties is still high. The reality is that it’s unlikely you’ll be the only person viewing a property. But don’t worry, because you can still get ahead of the game. It’s important to expand your searches outside of property websites. Although great for getting an idea of what’s on the market, many agents – Fenn Wright included – have an initial discreet selling period where details of new properties are shared only with those on their mailing lists for a short time before being added to the online portals. That means your dream home may have been snapped up before you knew it was even up for sale! I highly recommend popping into your local branch, having a conversation and letting them know exactly what you’re looking for or sign up for early bird alerts online.
You can give yourself the best chance possible by ensuring that you are prepared before you start looking to avoid disappointment. I would advise getting mortgage advice so you have your finances in order, know your maximum borrowing price and the most you’re willing to offer. Being prepared will put you in a position of strength, and means the seller can be confident about accepting your offer.