Like all our readers, we’re wondering what the future holds (when, rather than if) so we’ve done a bit of digging for information!
The general consensus seems to be that we are likely to see a mini boom towards the latter part of the year in London’s prime, private residential market. This should kick-in when quarantine measures are lifted and business activities begin returning to normal.
Some say we have been in a vacuum and when we open it, everything will be just as we left it. Some predict a 20% rise in transactions as pent-up demand is released. Most agree that any impact on prices is likely to be minimal as most buyers are just delaying rather than walking away.
Over the last few months, a third fewer homes were sold, compared to last year.
LonRes also noted that the number of fall-through’s escalated by 85% but that the properties being sold at asking price was actually 59% up on 2019, thanks to Brexit stagnation. Beauchamps added that the drop in transactional volumes in the first half of this year are somewhere between 60-90%.
On March 27th, when headlines proclaimed that No 10 was suspending the UK housing market, savvy estate agents altered their modus operandi overnight.
Now the property market must rely on virtual viewings, remote liaisons and ‘reservations’ with delayed completions. A handful of wealthy clients have been brave enough to buy unseen.
Going forward a new attitude may now embrace and prioritise space over location, with outdoor space of some sort being available. The impact on international business travel will have a huge effect on London’s short-term summer lettings market with far fewer visitors from the Middle East and Asia expected. On the other hand, this may be balanced by so many hotels remaining closed.
From virtual tours to video flythrough, there are now so many new cameras and technologies to adopt, that agents will have to add a whole new on-line skill set. They will also be far more reliant on marketing and media promotion, which we are already witnessing.
It will be interesting to see how the property market adapts, develops and operates in the future.