Category Archives: House Prices

Coventry Bucking The Trend or Could It Be Ourselves? Just Maybe….

After some careful analysis that we would be delighted to present to any potential client wishing to sell their home, we seem to have bucked a national trend somewhat.

The latest data from NAEA Propertymark has revealed that, during Februrary, agreed house sales rose to a 10 year high – 74% of which were below the original asking price, suggesting sellers are becoming more realistic when it comes to property transactions.

This, although clearly good news, and personally to me, a positive move in terms of reality and affordability, is not what we have observed ourselves. Since January 1st this year we have agreed 35% more sales than the same period last year. Of this and if we consider 100% of our agreed sales we have found that 70% have sold for the asking price or higher. 

As a business we are delighted with these results. Now we find that they may be even bucking the trend. 

If priced correctly and marketed without compromise and as well as physically possible then asking prices and over asking prices can certainly be achieved.

If your marketing is simply so so and your asking price is too high then what hope could a seller possibly have. Please don’t fall down into this trap.

I valued a house on Friday that needed decorating, offered nothing exceptional at all and had been marketed for 10 weeks by another agent. The asking price was close to 10% too high, the photography was poor and the “professional” advice he received (which achieved only four viewings in 10 weeks) was “don’t worry about the decoration, the new owners can do it themselves”.

Honestly, it’s no wonder Estate Agents aren’t taken seriously sometimes.

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Can Self Confidence Really Improve Your Properties Value?

I’m not talking about braggadocio or arrogance here. I’m not even discussing an ability (or lack of) to point out a properties most “sellable” assets. What I’m referring to is our nations endearing strength in it’s own beliefs. With the trigger of Article 50 due later this week many conversations I’ve had over the last fortnight have asked for my opinion on “what will happen?”. Why anyone would ask me I don’t know, but it’s made for a few interesting exchanges.

The HomeOwnersAlliance, after studying recent data released by The Office for National Statistics, revealed the extraordinary evidence that self confidence has not only bucked a trend but stuck candles in it and launched it skyward.

The five regions which voted most strongly to leave the EU have all seen property price increases in excess of 3 per cent compared to June 2016, with the East of England the fastest-growing region at 4.25 per cent.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, the only three regions which voted to remain have seen substantially slower growth.

Paula Higgins, Chief Executive of the HomeOwners Alliance said

“There is a clear pattern here; areas that voted more strongly to leave the EU have seen property prices grow faster over the past six months than areas that were pro-reiStock_000002696243XSmallmain.

“Of course, house prices are dictated by a myriad of economic, political and social factors, but confidence – the all-important ‘feel-good factor’ – is vital.

This really does show how “optimism” can “trump” negativity. The public feeling more confident in both their everyday lives and working environments  is echoed by willingness to not only buy but also to spend. Of course, in regions where many incomes are generated by overseas trade and the associated industries that support it, a real nervousness about personal circumstances cannot be underestimated.

Why would you be willing to invest where uncertainty reigns? Like most aspects of life it all boils down to how confident you feel and no advice or opinion can normally alter that!

If You Hear “I Can’t Believe my Home is Worth That Much!?”, Then it Probably Isn’t!

BPA-Vinyls-OL-AiCC-10-Coventry_BPA_540pxYou’ve just won £250,000 on the lottery but need to pay £500 to have the cheque couriered to you! A relative has left £1.1 Million to you but it’s in a holding account in Nigeria!  We Buy Any Car have told you your car is worth more than you could sell it for yourself on Auto Trader! You think your house is worth about £250,000 but an Estate agent with a low volume of agreed sales tells you it should be marketed at £325,000!

If these declarations sound too good to be true, it’s because they are! Since January 1st 2017 we have agreed sales on an incredible amount of new instructions. Sensible sellers, once the facts are presented, understand that if their home is worth “more” they will likely “get more”. Supply and demand in a market place with little stock dictates that buyers may have to pay the “asking price” but if the property is overvalued to start with, then they’ve no idea of the true value anyway. This is when property  just sit’s there.  And that’s no good for anyone.

If priced “reasonably” the public demand increases and in 70% of the cases this year, our properties have sold for the asking price or above.

Our advice, to enable a smooth sale remains the same. If the buying public think an asking price is reasonable, then the buying public will come. They won’t come one at a time either. You will have a choice of buyers to suit your needs and it’s this balance that makes for as little stress as possible. It’s also this balance that enable’s you to move onwards and secure you new home.

Price Increases in Coventry by 24%. Brexit Showing No Ill Effects Whatsoever!

iStock_000002696243XSmallNo Brexit Ill effects whatsoever? Well, as is always the case the deeper you delve the murkier the reality becomes and that certainly seems to be the case here as well.

Coventry has seen tremendous price rises over the last few years with Styvechale and Earlsdon being the forerunners in most cases. Not anymore. Median price increases are certainly more common than price reductions but some areas have suffered when others have soared.

The remarkable and seemingly unstoppable wave of new students in the city dominates those areas with the highest price rises. CV4 including Charter Avenue, Cannon Park, De Montfort Way, Cannon Hill Road and a radius stretching as far as Hearsall Gold Club have seen prices rise from an average of £370,000 to as much as £458,000 over the last calendar year!

CV6 comes a close second but with a very different demographic. Student accommodation again, albeit Coventry University rather than The University of Warwick, has seen similar increases but with dramatically lower actual sales prices agreed.

What must always be considered when analysing statistics like this is what isn’t included. Statistics are only available because transactions take place. Many areas, Earlsdon being a prime example, have become almost landlocked with sellers wanting to move but with not enough property coming to the market for statistics to be even relevant.

This suggests, as we all know, that if you are truly happy in a location then comparable prices are hard to find and that statistics, sometimes, only tell one of a thousand stories!

 

Inner London Slips As The Rest Of Us Climb

BPA-Vinyls-OL-AiCC-10-Coventry_BPA_540pxI’m not saying it’s become affordable or that I’d like to live there at all, but Inner London is sensing a disturbance in The Force. Born out of Brexit jitters and high Buy To Let taxes rather than Dark Side itself, Inner London has seen property growth drop over the last year with 14% less houses coming to market and growth recorded at just 0.1%.

With a predicted national average growth of a further 2% in 2017, Inner London seems to be facing a fall of 5% with some boroughs seeing drops of up to 16%.

Now we are seeing London homeowners moving here. Coventry, much improving and seemingly year on year, has become very much part of the commuter belt now.

Please take note London Midland, your Birmingham and Coventry to London trains are integral to the success of this City, no more talk of cancellations please!

The infrastructure of Friargate is finally taking shape (strewth!) and both Jaguar Landrover and both Universities are attracting swaths of new residents to the City.

Not quite so in London where a degree of panic seems to be encroaching with Article 50 threatening even more pressures.

Like I say, I wouldn’t want to live there though.  A journey of 60 minutes (if we can find our alarm clocks!) and a railcard is certainly more attractive than a house for half the size and twice the price!

Yep. I like it here. It’s all begin to happen.

 

As London Property Falters Much Of The UK Bucks The Trend!

When we have written about London pricing soaring and the rest of us catching up, the London marketplace may have smirked. Now, the boot seems to be on the other foot with active growth and non deterred sellers coming to the market in the majority of regions outside of the Bubble. If we take a snapshot over the  last six weeks of activity we can see that the two weeks prior to the Referendum saw a like for like drop in instructions by 8% while interestingly the first two weeks post Brexit saw instructions rise by 6%.

Regionally Estate Agents report that the property market continues to build momentum due to the lack of property coming onto the market. The interesting dynamic here is that prices will likely continue to rise unless the volume of instructions increase. With Mortgage rates remaining low and buyers experiencing a degree of panic that further “suitable” properties will “not” come to the market, the higher prices are being,in the majority of cases, offered.

At Elizabeth Davenport we like to see what the public really feel about the price of there ideal home. Our goal is to generate as much interest as possible and not just to sell, but to find the very best buyer; have a choice if you like. This is not going to happen if you price the buyers of your property out of the equation. If the advertised price isn’t cynical the public will appreciate it and multiple buyers can be found. As I’m sure you can see, this does not occur from demanding a price above that which the property is worth. Our Sold to For Sale ratio reflects this with over 65% of our stock consistently sold.

Brexit has not affected the market place in Coventry and Warwickshire because there is not enough stock for sale. Whilst the demand outweighs the supply the prices will, for many of us, remain too high for comfort. But everyone does need to live somewhere. Possibly not London though.Board Images

Why Asking Price Is So Important

If your property has been on sale without success for more than 3 months then this probably means something is wrong with the marketing. This could be any of a number of things, perhaps the photos aren’t up to scratch or maybe the property isn’t being advertised through the right channels. Just as likely though is the possibility that your home is on sale at too high an asking price.

I hear many homeowners say to me that “If the price is too high then people will just make lower offers.” Unfortunately this often isn’t the case and in reality overpriced homes often receive few viewings and often don’t receive any offers at all. The reason for this is simple.iStock_000002696243XSmall

An RICS report showed that 70% of buyers pay 20% more than they originally set out to spend. This means that if your property is worth £150,000 the most likely buyers will have been searching for properties advertised between £120,000 – £150,000. So if you put your home on sale at £160,000 the most likely buyers won’t be coming to view it. In fact all of the WRONG buyers will come and view and when they do it won’t live up to their expectations and they will be disappointed. So you won’t receive any offers.

So asking price is critical in attracting viewings but even more crucially it’s very important in attracting the RIGHT viewers. In Coventry right now there is generally a shortage of property for sale so if your home goes on sale at the correct price and is marketed well by your Estate Agent with good photos and floor-plans then you should be able to find a buyer in a matter of weeks.

Call Elizabeth Davenport today for more expert advice on selling your property and for a free valuation.

Want To Sell or Want to Sit? There is a Choice!

Well,  Autumn ‘s here and the leaves are falling. Thankfully house prices aren’t. Indeed, thankfully for many, they are not soaring either. Forget London’s Boom, the reality all around us, is that the reports of a Boom have heightened the expectations of sellers throughout Britain.

I had a Seller last week tell me that the agent they were marketing with in Coventry had told them that house prices had risen 10% over the height of the market in 2008. He was bullish about this too by all account. This same agent had not sold the Vendors house. It had sat on the market without viewings for 6 months. That’s because the Agent was talking nonsense. He/She just wanted an instruction to sell the house. Maybe the individual was being pressured by targets. Whomever’s fault it was it wasn’t the sellers yet they were the ones that suffered. You shouldn’t play games like this. You get found out. 

Robin King a Director at “Move With Us” has just compiled a survey of over 100 Estate Agents. “Reports of a housing bubble may be pushing home owners to set unrealistic asking prices,” he said. “Putting a property on market with an accurate valuation is paramount. Our advice to home owners is not to always believe the hype and to listen to their local property expert, the estate agent”.

Good advice if you can trust your Estate Agent. If you can’t your house is going to sit on the portals and no one is going to come.

We have just compiled a list of every Estate Agents current stock and sales performance in Coventry. How much are they selling and how quickly? The results are shocking. Many of the “market leaders”, the household names, the old families and the aggressive corporates, are sitting on stocks of your houses with only very low proportions being sold. They’ve overpriced and for fear of admitting mistake they won’t approach you to discuss it.  They won’t request the reduction in case you decide to venture elsewhere. They’d rather your house just sit there. With that mentality, you will too so don’t wait for that non-existent call. If you’d like to know the statistics just let us know and we’d be happy to show you. We’re not all bad..

Are We On a Bus Driven By London?

Once again that omnipresent threat to the UK’s perception of Estate Agency is our Capital City. It drives a progressing market to the extreme and whilst the counties beyond do not rejoice in its’ ascendency they suffer when it eats itself. David Cameron, backed by Nick Clegg (what?) have suggested curbs on the second phase of the Help to Buy Scheme. However both agree with Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, that we do need to build more new homes. This cannot be denied. But if we do and the Help to Buy is restructured or even phased out then whose buying? More investors?

Undoubtedly the Bank of England’s uncertain management of  the rapid increase in house prices has been fuelled by London. A 17% rise within the last year has been experienced in London with an average outside the area of 9%. Coventry has seen a equivalent growth of 4.5%. If this growth was experienced throughout the UK then no such redress of Help to Buy would surely occur. The lack of available property generates increased prices and in London, with a constant fuel of overseas investors, overpricing  is clearly not a concern.

If there are more buyers than property and asking prices become “Guide Prices”  then the BBC decided to scare the nation with the fact that “Estate Agents” were now charging the buyer and not the seller. I’ve seen this happen with one agent in Chelsea charging a £6000 administration fee  just to place an offer with the Vendor. This sounds horrendous but don’t think that this is transferable to the Midlands because it isn’t.  That’s a bus none of us would ever want to ride on.

 

The Truth About House Prices

Once again the national media have been providing commentary about the “housing bubble” and talk of measures to cool the property market down seem to be getting louder. The press however are pre-occupied with what’s happening in London and the home counties and don’t seem interested in reporting what’s happening on the ground further afield. It’s a shame that local media outlets don’t run stories about what’s happening in your own backyard or more specifically the Coventry area.

Doing some of my own research, I found it extremely easy to get the exact figures for the Coventry area, simply doing an internet search for “Land Registry Price Index” and the real data is available publicly. The contrast between the reality and what the press are reporting is amazing. Importantly the only data that matters is what houses actually sold for and this data is available through Land Registry. Price indices based upon asking prices are meaningless and misleading.

Prices in Coventry rose 4.6% annually to the end of March. This contrasts with those in prime central London which soared 17.5% during the same period. However, the most amazing statistics are where prices currently stand compared to the top of the market in early 2008. Coventry prices are still 12% lower than the at the peak (see graph). Compare this to the city of Westminster where they have risen 72% during the same period. The national figures put out on TV are heavily skewed by what’s happening in the south-east and as a result are meaningless for the rest of the country.

The market in Coventry is very healthy at present but certainly not out of control or becoming a bubble. We don’t need politicians, bankers or economists applying the brakes to our market for all of the wrong reasons.