So, more than half of the RICS surveyors who also work as estate agents (55% of 258 surveyed) say prices drifted lower in the last three months, reflecting the results from Halifax and Nationwide surveys in October. The small statistical sample does make the results a little academic but, unlike the mortgage lender indexes, this survey is a report “from the coalface” of the industry. However, is this a sign of the market dropping or just a reflection of a normal seasonal trend? Activity in Bath certainly does tail off towards the end of each year and the RICS conclusion (that buyers are waiting till the spring to see what happens) is entirely understandable as the nights draw in and gales batter the nation!
Whilst we don’t doubt for a moment that the overall national trend in prices is slightly downwards (at least until the anticipated tick upwards in January), we have seen a marked increase in activity during the last fortnight. For a small agency, 6 sales agreed in this time is extremely unusual and a reminder that correctly priced property in certain brackets is still very much in demand. Those brackets seem to be 1)family houses between £230,000 and £300,000 and 2)investment/buy to let property for students.
In contrast to the RICS survey results, Agency Express (who put up most of the UK’s for sale boards for corporate agents) have this week highlighted a 4% increase in October sales. Will these successful vendors buy onwards and create a bump in activity before Christmas?
Madison Oakley are an independent estate agent and letting agent in Bath. We are a small director led firm with over 50 years combined local experience.To find out more about us, do visit our website. We would always be delighted to receive comments via our blog or do feel free to call us on 01225 466525.