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The times they are a’changing As we (hopefully) enter our long overdue summer and the longer, lighter evenings, those of us involved in the Property Market generally gear up for the “busy period”. However while our sale levels at Andersons … Continue reading
The times they are a’changing
As we (hopefully) enter our long overdue summer and the longer, lighter evenings, those of us involved in the Property Market generally gear up for the “busy period”. However while our sale levels at Andersons in 2012 were identical to 2007 ( and this year looks like getting towards to the” halcyon” levels of the early ‘noughties’) I do wonder if things will ever get back to the way they were. The market in general is still way behind where it was prior to the recession. Recent sales statistics for Scotland indicated that the number of sales in 2012 was less than half the number in 2007. Certainly we are still a way off the property values of 2007/08 and with Scottish Home Reports seemingly setting a ceiling level, it is hard to see prices in most parts of Scotland recovering any time soon. Of course that is a double edged sword as lower prices will encourage more people onto the market and encourage many to move up the market but it does mean that a lot of first time sellers who bought at the peak of the market may be in negative equity. Add the cost of a Home Report and other fees and it can make’ moving up’ very difficult. While the Chancellor seems keen on encouraging the Banks to assist first time buyers into the market, (especially to buy new houses) I would certainly encourage the powers that be to look at the problems of “would-be” movers. i.e first-time SELLERS. A select few lenders have introduced schemes that allow a portion of negative equity to be transferred to a new mortgage but, as always, there is a premium to be paid for this. Instead of merely introducing incentives and equity schemes for new buyers the chancellor should also look at under writing the negative equity of those keen to move but hampered by not having the equity to move up the market. Provided the new mortgage is affordable to the borrower it is exactly the same principle as underwriting first time buyers, with the additional benefit that it is helping the whole market to recover by bringing more purchasers into the “non-new” market. No-one wants to do anything which is going to overheat the market but the property market is a key factor to general economic well-being. The Exchequer, and the Banks, need to look at the complete property market and not just on the new build sector.. and need to do it now rather than waiting until 2014.
Get it Right!
Another sign of the recovering property market is surely the number of leaflets filling our mail boxes from all types of estate agents volunteering (sic) their services. Competition is good for the market and keeps us suppliers on our toes. Here at Andersons we are introducing a number of new initiatives over the next few months. We plan a new user friendly website with instant twitter feeds and more links to socal media sites and the other property portals. A new “Town and Country” service for larger and rural properties will be introduced. Also planned are more promotional evenings for various areas of the market; First time buyers, country homes, investment homes and plots, to name a few. Watch our website or facebook page for details.
However, without wishing to be critical, we do wish some of the agents leafleting would check their facts. A recent mailshot featured a list of properties recently sold in Kinross-shire. At least 75% of the properties listed in the leaflet had been “sold” by Andersons (and indeed some not all that recently). We would rather our clients houses were not circulated in this way but it seems we cannot control this. While the mails-shot recipient may reasonably think the properties listed were sold by the agent producing the mailshot, they do not actually claim that. However that is not my complaint. My problem is that at least one of the properties listed as “recently sold” was not sold and indeed is still not sold. Maybe some fact checking is required.
And finally…..In Demand
For the first time in several years we are now seeing closing dates returning and certainly on occasion more than one interested party very interested in specific types of property. While there is still a reluctance to pay the full home report value many properties have indeed reached that level. A recent article in the financial press reported that the average selling price in Scotland was 15-20% below the Home Report value. That is not our experience. If you are contemplating selling give us a call. It may just be that your home is in demand!
John J Kenny