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Icy cold in Central London property sales

18 Sep 2020
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Icy cold in Central London property sales
London sales rates heatmap

This week in five seconds

  • UK sales market has normalised outside London
  • London is proving much more challenging with sales rates declining towards the centre to as low as 13%
  • Outside space remains a key driver for property sales
  • Centre for Economics and Business Research forecasts prices to drop 14%

Property market has normalised outside London

Property sales are fairly normal although there are pockets, particularly in major cities, where sales are slower. UK wide sales rate is 55% in the last 60 days and 47% for property above £500k in value.

Activity on viewings is much higher this week now that families are back from holiday and kids are back at school.

London is proving much more challenging

London has experienced a far greater flooding of listings than the rest of the UK (see our recent article: Well Stocked!) and this is hitting West and Central London property sales far more acutely than anywhere else in the UK.

As you can see from our heat map above the sales rate is declining from 50% on the outskirts of East and South East London to 13% in West Central London.

Outside space a key driver

At the property level outside space is a key consideration and those that don’t have it or have restricted outside space are struggling particularly in urban areas. Buyers would rather compromise on square footage and have a garden.

Also, if you are in a commoditised area with a lot of similar properties on the market, pricing is very sensitive with those too high experiencing no viewings at all.

Prices to drop 14%

The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) suggested (as covered by The Times) that prices will drop 14% next year as multiple support programmes unwind: the furlough scheme, mortgage holidays and the stamp duty cut which ends March 31.

There is currently a lot of focus on the stamp duty holiday as if you are going to take advantage of this, you need to have an offer on a property by Christmas, in order to complete by the end of March - so that is focusing people's searches. The conveyancers are likely to be inundated with agreed deals towards the end of the year.

Have a great weekend all.

The Movewise Team.

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