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Valuation Request

people wanting to buy

The number of people wanting to buy a house has fallen to the lowest level since mid-2008 amid post-referendum uncertainty, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
In its residential market survey, which has been carried out since the referendum, 27pc more surveyors polled said that house prices would fall rather than rise across the country in the next three months.
That dip in prices is expected to remain in London and the east of England for the next 12 months. This fall is not expected to be in the long term, however: those polled said that prices are still expected to rise over the next five years across the country, by an average of 14pc

Rent rises are 'inevitable' if landlords are going to stay in business

Rent rises are 'inevitable' if landlords are going to stay in business following the tax clampdown on buy-to-let, experts have warned.
The Residential Landlords Association said the tax changes being applied on investing in property will see landlords' profits 'wiped out' in some cases.
It means landlords will have no option but to recoup their losses through higher rents, with tenants ultimately paying the price of the Government's 'unfair tax-grab', the association said.

A recent survey of the association's members found that 84 per cent are likely to consider increasing rents following the Chancellor's withdrawal of the tax relief that landlords can claim.
The relief will be hacked back from next April until it is removed altogether and replaced with a 20 per cent tax credit against mortgage interest.

Campaigners argue that the changes are unfair as the current system of being able to deduct finance costs is in-line with general business taxation principles, where tax is paid on profits.
Under the new tax system, landlords will end up part paying tax on revenue.

Discounting through negotiation was already rife in London’s housing market

Discounting through negotiation was already rife in London’s housing market but has stepped up a gear since the EU referendum, with vendors accepting they must drop asking prices to offload homes.
Meanwhile, nervous buyers have become more demanding, wanting deals that will insulate them from possible future price falls as the UK’s separation from the EU takes shape. 
Paul Mahoney, managing director of property advisers Nova Financial, says: “With the uncertainty in the market many buyers want a sweetener to make them feel more comfortable with making a transaction. Buyers should use this uncertainty and the slowdown in transactions to their advantage.”
Price cuts have been spreading across the market over the past two years, largely thanks to increases in stamp duty at the top end, and tax increases for buy-to-let investors and a generally tougher mortgage lending climate in the mainstream market.
Ten ways to talk down the asking price
Do your research on property prices in the area and get hard evidence to back up a discount request. 
Find out how long the property has been on the market. The longer it has lingered, the more likely a deal.
Never admit your true budget to agents — inevitably they will want to push you to its limits. 
Don’t say you are in a rush to buy — it weakens your position.
Really cheeky offers just annoy everyone. Stay within 10-20 per cent of the asking price.
You will be more appealing if you are a cash buyer, chain free or have a mortgage in place.
Always go for a discount on new build at slow times of the year such as summer holidays and Christmas,  when builders like to unload stock in the run-up to their financial year.
If you can’t get money off, ask for freebies — for example, if the vendor will throw in carpets, shelving, expensive light fittings, garden furniture etc. With developers, discuss rental guarantees, stamp duty payments, legal fees and furniture pack inclusions.
Don’t panic if the agent says there are other keen buyers — it’s probably not true.
A poor survey can be a negotiating point. Suggest splitting all the cost of repairs 50/50.
 Average discount on the original asking price of a UK property was over £25,000 — up nearly £4,000 compared with January.
But even if a property has already been discounted it would be a mistake to assume it is a steal — it may simply have been overpriced in the first place. “The Brexit result has been the catalyst for what is actually a correction in the market,” explains Anthony Pears, sales manager at Lurot Brand.
“Vendors who do now need to sell are more likely to cast their optimism ;aside and ask a more enticing and realistic asking price.”
What the market will do over the next year or two is anyone’s guess. Buyers will naturally want to avoid buying at the top and tumbling into negative equity.
But if significant numbers succeed in driving down prices, particularly of new build, the market will also fall.
The only major player so far to estimate how much prices will fall in Brexit’s wake is KPMG. It forecasts nationwide drops of five per cent, and a little more in London.
Most agents advocate calm. “We don’t expect huge falls but slower price growth and fewer transactions in places where prices were most stretched,” says Jeremy Leaf, of Jeremy Leaf & Co estate agents. “Lack of stock is supporting prices even if demand weakens.”

Councils are buying properties outside their boroughs

Councils are buying properties outside their boroughs to house their homeless because of rising prices in the capital, research by trade magazine Inside Housing has found.
Freedom of Information Act requests found seven boroughs had bought 168 properties over the last three years out of their areas.
Westminster bought the most properties (81) in places including Barking, Redbridge, Haringey, Romford, Chadwell Heath, Greenwich, East Ham, Newham and Enfield.
Wandsworth and Harrow had each bought 23 homes outside their boroughs in the period in areas such as Croydon, Mole Valley, Watford and Ealing.
A spokesperson for Harrow Council told Inside Housing that it has more than 300 families in emergency accommodation, which may have to move to the Home Counties because of “the London housing crisis and escalating prices of property”.
Boroughs including Enfield and Brent said they planned to buy hundreds more in the coming years.
Cllr Ahmet Oykener, Enfield Council’s cabinet member for housing and housing regeneration, said: “We have found other London boroughs placing families in temporary accommodation in Enfield because it is cheaper than in their own borough.


David Dimbleby has just announced the UK will be leaving the EU as the final votes are counted. As most of the polls suggested a Remain Vote, it came as a surprise to most people, including the City. The Pound has dropped 6% this morning after the City Whiz kids got their predictions wrong and MP’s from the Remain camp are using words like “challenging times ahead”.
.. and now the vote has been made .. what next for the 16.78m British homeowners especially the 8.69m of those British homeowners with a mortgage?
The Chancellor in the campaign suggested property prices would drop by 18%. Using Treasury estimates, their method of calculating this was tenuous at best, but focused around the abrupt and hasty increase in UK interest rates, which in turn would raise the cost of mortgages, and therefore lower demand for property, causing a drop in property prices.… and I would say, yes .. that will probably happen.
British Property Values
British property values will probably drop in the coming 12 to 18 months – but by 18% – I am sorry I find that a little pessimistic and believe that figure was rhetoric to get homeowners and landlords to vote in a particular way. But the UK property market is quite a monster.
Since the last In/Out EU Referendum in June 1975, property values in Britain have risen by 1750.93%
(That isn’t a typo) and whilst property prices did drop nationally by 18.7% between the peak of 2007 and bottom of the market in 2009, when one compares property values today in the country, compared to that all-time high of 2007, (the period before the financial crisis of the Credit Crunch of 2008/9) .. they are still up 10.14% higher.
Another Credit Crunch?
And so, notwithstanding the Credit Crunch, the worst global economic outlook since the 1930s and the recession it brought us, a matter of a few years later, the Government were panicking in 2012/3/4 that the housing market was a runaway train.
Now the same Credit Crunch doom-mongers and Sooth-Sayers that predicted soup kitchens in 2008/9 are predicting Brexit meltdown. Bad news sells newspapers. Stock markets may rise, stock markets may fall, yet the British public continued to buy property in 2009/10 and beyond. Aspiring first time buyers and buy to let landlords dusted themselves down, took a deep breath and carried on buying… because us Brit’s love our Bricks and Mortar .. we need a roof over our head.
However, as mentioned previously, if the value of the pound drops, in the past UK Interest Rates have risen to reverse that drop. However, whilst a cheaper pound will make your pint of Sangria a little more expensive on your Spanish holiday this year and make your brand new BMW pricer .. it will make British export cheaper! Which is great for the economy.
Interest rates
… and what of interest rates? Since 2009, interest rates have been at 0.5% and lots of people have become accustomed to those sorts of levels. So what if interest rates rise .. end of the world? Interest rates in the 1986/88 property boom were on average 9.25%, the 1990’s they were on average around 6.5% and uber-boom years (when UK property values were rising by 20% a year for three or four straight years across the UK) .. 4.5%. Many of you reading this who are in their 50’s and older will remember interest rates at 15%.
But I suspect interest rates won’t rise that much anyway, as Mark Carney (Chief of the Bank Of England) knows, raising interest rates causes deflation – which is the last thing the British economy needs at the moment. In fact they have been printing money (aka Quantitative Easing) for the last few years (which causes inflation) to the tune of £375bn a month. A bit of inflation because the pound has slipped on the money markets (not too much mind you) might be a good thing?
.. because whilst property values might drop in the country, they will bounce back. It’s only a paper loss.. because it only becomes real if you sell. And if you have to sell, again as most people move up market when they sell, whilst your property might have dropped by 5% or 10%, the one you want to buy would have dropped by the same 5% to 10% .. and here is the best part – (and work your sums out) you would actually be better off because the more expensive property you would be purchasing would have come down in value (in actual pound notes) than the one you are selling.
The British landlords of the 4.3m British buy to let properties have nothing to fear neither, nor do the 10.11m tenants living in their properties.
Buy to let is a long term investment. I think there might even be some buy to let bargains in the coming months as some people, irrespective of evidence, panic. Even if we pull up the drawbridge at Dover and immigration stopped today, the British population will still increase at a rate that will exceed the current property building level. Britain is building 139,600 properties a year, but needs according to the eminent ‘Barker Review of Housing Supply Report’, the country needs to build about 250,000 properties a year to even stand still, and as the the birth rate is increasing, the population is living longer and just under a quarter of all UK households now are occupied by a single person demand is only going up whilst supply is stifled. Greater demand than supply equals higher prices. That is definitely a fact.
So, what will happen next?
Well, there are many challenges ahead. The country has spoken and we are now in uncharted territory – but we have been through a couple of World Wars, an Oil Crisis, Black Monday, Black Wednesday, 15% interest rates and a Credit Crunch … and we survived!
And the value of British property? It might have a short term wobble… but don’t panic because in the long term -it’s safe as houses regardless.

Rent Your Spare Room

With rents rising, Britons across the country could rake in a small fortune renting out their spare room. London is known as the priciest region in the UK, but elsewhere in the country room rents are increasing much quicker than they are in the capital, SpareRoom.co.uk exclusively revealed to This is Money. Excluding London, room rents across the UK have risen by 5.01 per cent in a year, compared to 1.63 per cent in the capital.


A majority of people working in the property industry – nearly two-thirds – believe that leaving the EU would have a positive impact on the UK housing market.
Some 65% of agents and mortgage brokers are for Brexit.
The finding – by conveyancing giant My Home Move – is in stark contrast to warnings that the housing market will collapse if Britain votes to leave.
Ratings agency Fitch yesterday warned that house prices could crash by 25%.
The International Monetary Fund has also warned that property prices would go into reverse.
However, the My Home Move survey strongly suggests that agents will vote to leave the European Union.
The same survey does however say that the home moving public is much less decided with 53% unsure as to which way to vote.
These are among the findings ahead of My Home Move’s annual conference tomorrow.
The survey also found that most people working in the property industry (90%) believe that a lack of stock and high prices have become the new normal.
Interestingly, the 250 people polled preferred support for downsizers over help for first-time buyers.
A total of 61% wanted greater government help for downsizers, while just 21% wanted support for first-time buyers.
My Home Move chief executive Doug Crawford said: “The market has been suffering from a lack of stock and high house prices for several years, so we’re not surprised that those at the sharp end of the sector are frustrated by what has become the ‘new norm’.
“Recent Government changes to Stamp Duty, alongside schemes like Help to Buy, have kept the market going since the recession, but the findings from our survey would suggest that those closest to the market are seeking even more intervention to shake things up.
“Nearly two-thirds of the estate agents and brokers surveyed believe leaving the EU would be positive for the housing market; and 85% of home movers are seeking greater Government assistance for those trying to move up and down the housing ladder.
“However, despite the recent policy move to tax additional home buyers, as a way of encouraging more first-time buyers on to the market, there remains a level of scepticism that home ownership levels will rise above the current level by 2025, suggesting that without intervention market conditions would worsen and Generation Rent would become an even greater reality for many more people.”