Property Market Update – June 2024

Following the spring bounce in activity, demand remains higher than last year. Late May/early June saw a 9% increase* in properties going under offer than the same period last year. This despite a general election being called, since which 74% of agents* have seen buyer activity has remained the same or increased than prior to the announcement.

Several buyers and sellers are asking me about the impact of the general election. While it does bring about a level of uncertainty – which is unsettling for many – there are no certainties following the election for buyers or sellers. While there’s talk of various boosts for the housing market, there’s no guarantee if and when these will occur.

Add to this, there’s still pent-up demand from last year when people put off their moves due to higher interest rates, but now really do need to move, along with the usual drivers of births, deaths, marriages, divorces, relocations and first time buyers making that long awaited step onto the housing ladder.

Sold prices are up 1.8%*^ over the same time last year, this is contrary to what many expected, including myself! That said, given inflation, we are seeing a relative price dip. This is to be expected after the lofty heights of the 2022 property rush that saw so many properties selling for in excess of asking price. Bottom line, anyone who has owned a home for the last 5 years has made money. For anyone looking to sell, it’s important to be realistic in terms of market trends and value,

While interest rates have stabilised, with a reduction expected, mortgage rates have gone up slightly this year. Anyone would think the banks are on a money-grab mission… There’s plenty of pressure on the banks to be more reasonable. Watch this space!

Meanwhile, the impact of higher interest rates over the last 20 months have squeezed some a little too much. This will likely continue, as those who were on low fixed rate mortgages come to the end of their agreements and are subject to higher re-mortgage rates. Consequently mortgage payment defaults are at a 10 year high, with some home owners downsizing as a result.

Jon is mindful of the expensive promises Labour and the Tories are making, leading up to the election. Consequently he’s currently advising borrowers to consider 5 year fixed deals and let the banks take the risk.

It’s still a bit up in the air this year. Some are still predicting a price dip, others a rise. Rarely do these predictions take into account the relative impact of inflation. Overall, the market is busy enough with motivated buyers, but they are price keen. Anyone looking to sell should pick the right agent and work with them on a pricing strategy to secure a buyer in good time.

*  Property Industry Eye

^ Price analysis depends on who you listen to

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