Happy New Year! We hope this finds you well, rested and not too jaded after last nights celebrations!
ÂWhat a year 2016 was with surprising election results, sad news of frequent celebrity deaths and terrible news of terrorist attacks rocking the world with the latest horrific event taking place in Istanbul only last night. Our thoughts of course are with all those affected across the world, we can only hope that 2017 sees things stabilise, somehow.
Closer to home both in location and subject, 2017 looks set to be a rocky year in the property sector with the latter part of 2016 showing all too clearly that things have changed somewhat both in terms of demand and pricing. That said, we still live in a high demand/low stock area and that puts us in good stead to weather out any storms we may need to endure. Authorities on the subject don't seem to be able to agree on whether we will be seeing dramatic falls in property prices or indeed if we need to be concerned about imminent recession but what they all do agree on is people will always need to move home, no matter what the economy does.
Personally, we think it's a reset that the industry needed (things were too crazy there for a while) but we don't see there being a monstrous slide in prices. Instead the reset has brought out and will continue to bring out the serious buyers, sellers and indeed agents and as a result transactions and those involved in them have become more transparent. We look forward to 2017 being more of the same: serious, honest and motivated buyers and sellers working towards securing their dream homes on fair and realistic terms, hopefully with our assistance.
All that said, realistic sales need realistic asking prices and so we would encourage you to revisit your idea of the value of your property, especially if you were last valued any time before October 2016. Sadly listing price and achievable price are proving to be further and further apart in recent times with agents valuing or sellers pushing to be listed at their desired pre Autumn 2016 price, ignoring the falls being suffered. Buyers are savvy to the changes in pricing however and so this results in properties being on the market for much longer than they need to be, usually until the seller relents and drops the property price, sometimes only by a fraction but enough to bring the viewers in. Don't be that seller: watch the market around you, check the sold price stats on Land Registry and if you have an inkling things aren't going well, ask your agent to give you an honest revaluation of your home - even if you don't like what they say and choose to stay put as a result, the truth is always better than an unachievable fiction. And remember it's all relative - what you think you have 'lost' on your current property is bound to be gained on your purchase, it won't only be you 'suffering', everything evens out overall.
But don't worry, it's not all doom and gloom. A New Year always gives the property industry the kick that it needs after a Christmas slumber and this coming year is looking to be no exception. New listings are being booked in and viewers are coming back to the table with renewed interest, keen to secure their new homes in time for late Spring move in. Therefore, if you are considering a sale any time soon, get your pricing and timing right: both are more key to a successful move than ever.
Whatever 2017 holds for you, whether it's a home sale, another investment, a refurbishment of the home you just bought, a new buy to let, a search for the right home or indeed just settling in where you already are, we hope that you find yourselves content, successful and above all else in good health and spirit.
Get out there and make your dreams come true - it goes without saying: if we can help in any way we would be delighted to.
With all our best New Year wishes
Sacha and Scott
ps: did you know that after a century of constant decline, 2016 saw an increase for the first time in Tiger numbers? See - 2016 wasn't all that bad after all :)