Head of Residential at Lister Haigh, www.listerhaigh.co.uk
This could well be the last estate agency article written in The Property Post before a Brexit “deal” is agreed in principle, begging the question how the market might perform in the future.
However, there could be further conjecture should there be “no deal” or indeed further “delay”. The result is that we now seem to have modern day 3D’s creating uncertainty in the minds of so many property owners, and a
marketplace that is stagnating.
This is ironic when one considers that the traditional 3D’s - Death, Divorce and Debt - stimulate the market and offer opportunities for buyers.
It is clearly unfortunate for sellers involved in the traditional 3D’s but the reality is that sales of this nature often happen in competitive circumstances where there is a need to sell rather than just a desire to sell.
So if one follows the same thought process, I would contend that the modern day 3D’s - Deal, No Deal or Delay - should not be seen as constraining the market place.
This does, of course, assume that anybody selling at the present time prices their property accordingly so as to attract interest.
We all know that when property sells in competitive circumstances, human nature being as it is, there is an increased desire to win.
It would appear in some quarters that some buyers and sellers are thinking likewise, and that despite the perceived uncertainty brought about by the whole Brexit debate, there has been an increase in housing market activity over the last three to four weeks.
There has been a rise in the number of online property alerts in recent weeks and this is indicative of momentum as we head towards the traditional spring market bounce.
While we may not be sure where we may be going as a country in the short term, I firmly believe we will see a positive and improving housing market this Spring/Summer.
This is due to pent up intent on the part of buyers and sellers, which will start to hatch (excuse the Easter pun) as we are recognise the world continues whatever the outcome of the modern 3Ds.
Okay, this will not result in any significant price hikes but it is in everybody’s interest to see activity. It would be good for homeowners as well as all stake holders associated with the house ownership process, which includes fellow estate agents, conveyancers, building contractors, architects, interior designers etc.
So, at risk of repeating what I have said in the past in this column, if you are thinking of selling, early Spring is an ideal time to get all that maintenance work done so that your property will be seen as fit for purpose.
If you are a buyer, you also need to get yourself fit for purpose by knowing just what you can afford and knowing what your borrowing capacity is so that when you see what you like you can take a pragmatic view and bid accordingly. And if you are waiting for my modern 3Ds, then I have to ask “What are you going to gain by hesitating?”
Ultimately, the property you buy is going to be your future home. It’s not just a building to own as a vehicle for profit. For the foreseeable future those days have gone.
We all want places to live. I might be wrong, I might be right so who knows what my next article may contain post Brexit? But I do expect to report that estate agents are getting busier.
Tim Waring is Head of Residential at Lister Haigh, tel: 01423 730700.