The property market isn’t showing signs of slowing down...well, not just yet. But, with the current political turmoil, add in a cost-of-living crisis, consumer confidence at an all-time low, house prices rising each month, and not enough properties to meet demand - what’s in store for the housing market? Is now the right time to sell and if so, will you complete, dare we say it...before Christmas? We know it’s only July and talk of Christmas seems crazy, but we’ve done some digging on what industry experts are predicting for the property market and give you the lowdown to help you navigate the waters ahead.

Zoopla

With 1.2million homes expected to change hands across the UK in 2022 and demand remaining strong at 40% above the five-year average “sellers should act quickly to capitalise on recent gains.” But, with reports of completion times exceeding 170 days from Zoopla’s analysts, if you want to move, now is the time to sell.”

House prices rose again in June but on the flip side, the proportion of listings where asking prices have been reduced is also rising. Zoopla reports 1 in 20 properties had a reduction of 5% or more in May and the average price reduction is now 9%, which when applied to the average UK house price, is a discount of around £22,500.

Buyer demand is still strong in the housing market, but signals are emerging that the impetus may be easing,” says Gráinne Gilmore, Head of Research at Zoopla. “There are many factors supporting the price growth seen since the start of the pandemic, not least the continued imbalance between demand and supply, but the increasing cost of living, increasing mortgage rates for buyers and cloudier economic outlook will act as a brake on house price growth through the rest of the year.”

Rightmove 

Tim Banister, Rightmove’s resident property expert, is advising those that are thinking of moving and want to do so by the end of the year, to act quickly and get their own house on the market to give themselves the best chance of finding a buyer and completing the transaction by the end of the year.

Existing homeowners looking to buy again will still need to put themselves in the best possible position to secure their next home in this strong market by making sure they find a buyer for their current property before looking for their next home. This is all the more important for those hoping to complete the process as quickly as possible and enjoy Christmas in a new home this year."

Those that have made the decision to sell up and are now listed as 'sold subject to contract', may want to hold off putting any champagne on ice just yet. With over half a million UK properties currently waiting to reach the completion stage of their sale, the sheer volume of transactions has created a conveyancing logjam, forcing homeowners to wait 44% longer than in the same period in 2019 and 39% higher than the pre-pandemic five-year average.

Halifax

With house price growth at the forefront of the latest Halifax price index, Russell Galley, Halifax Managing Director, remains surprised by the strength of house prices, especially now in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis with inflation close to 40 year highs.

With annual house price inflation for detached homes reported at 13.9% and flats at a lower, but still significant 7.6% - the highest since late 2004 - not only is it difficult to get on the housing ladder, but it’s getting increasingly difficult to climb it.

Galley says, “house prices have now risen every month over the last year, and are up by 6.8% or £18,849 in cash terms so far in 2022, pushing the typical UK house price to another record high of £294,845. Our latest research found that the strong rise in property prices over the last two years, coupled with much slower wage growth, has already pushed the house price to income ratio up to a record level.”

Nationwide

UK house prices rose again in June by 0.3%, the 11th consecutive month in a row. Robert Gardner, Nationwide’s Chief Economist, writes, “part of the resilience is likely to reflect the current strength of the labour market, where the number of job vacancies has exceeded the number of unemployed people and unemployment rate remains close to 50-year lows.”

However, there could be signs of a tentative slowdown in the property market as "pressure on household finances intensifies...with inflation expected to reach double digits towards the end of the year. Moreover, the Bank of England is widely expected to raise interest rates further, which will also exert a cooling impact on the market if this feeds through to mortgage rates,” explains Gardner. However, with housing stock so low, the market has retained a surprising amount of momentum and this is helping to keep current upward pressure on UK house prices.

What's the verdict?

With so many political and economic uncertainties right now, some or all could have an impact on the housing market and your decision to move. However, an overriding sentiment shared by many experts to anyone who is thinking about moving now, is to simply do it.

But, with many warning about longer conveyancing times and if Christmas in a new house is on the cards, you may be disappointed if you aren’t already on the market or under offer.

If you haven’t got your house on the market yet or simply don’t want to wait the 170 days (around 5 and a half months), quoted by Gráinne Gilmore at Zoopla to complete on your home sale, what are your options? We’ve all read about Rightmove’s Tim Bannister repeatedly talking about sellers getting themselves in the best possible position and becoming a 'power-buyer’, well this is where Spring comes in.

How can Spring help?

Spring have helped many sellers gain the all important power-buyer’ status, meaning they are chain free and in the best possible position to proceed and beat the competition to their next property.

We do this by simply buying your home, removing the need to sell your home via an estate agent therefore eliminating the long conveyancing backlog homeowners are currently facing.  We can complete on the sale in as little as 14 days, or a date of your choice, making you chain free and in the best possible position to have an offer accepted.

To find out more about a Spring sale and chat to one of our friendly team, call us on 020 3966 9345 and let’s get you moving.  

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