August Market Comment

August 12, 2020

The bottle stopper has now been released, prompted by the end of full lockdown and the Treasury’s SDLT concession.

As soon as the Brexit decision was “concluded” late last year, we were hit by the pandemic.  Four years of uncertainty was condensed into a bottle neck of demand, which was then frustrated by three months of lockdown – and longer hair!  But three months of hair growth does not require three haircuts – yet three months of pent-up housing demand DOES require three times the stock availability!

That bottle stopper has now been released, prompted by the end (?) of full lockdown and the Treasury’s SDLT concession, which can save buyers as much as £15,000 in Stamp Duty.  We now have a mild frenzy of buyers and sellers all wanting to take advantage of the situation from their own perspective, especially while interest base rate remains at its historic 0.1%:

Sellers know that buyers are active once more, with many determined to buy before the SLDT concession comes to an end next Spring.  So they are holding out for their price.

Buyers, on the other hand, are keen to point out that despite the SDLT saving, it is they who are taking a risk by buying in what is now formally a recession, so they are coming in with low offers.

Who’s right then?  Buyer or Seller.  They both are.  These are confused times, like swirling waters between tides.  Inevitably the release of this cumulative demand empowers sellers and exerts upward pressure on house prices which now stand at a record high, with Halifax and Nationwide reporting monthly house price increases of 1.6% and 1.7% respectively.

But buyers sense a degree of profiteering here.  They know that unemployment and the confidence in the economy in general are likely to take a hit just at a time when the SDLT concession comes to an end.

As estate agents, our job is to help our clients make the most of the current market.  If you think a move might be on the cards within the next six to nine months, our advice is certainly to bring that move forward.  Act now!  Let us find you a buyer quickly and help YOU become a strong buyer yourself.  You might just find that things work to your advantage both ends!  Please call us now on 01323 412550 for immediate action.

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