Monthly Archives: September 2018

October 2018 – Market Comment

October CommentIf anyone thinks that the confusing political shenanigans of the past few weeks have destabilised the property market, they’d be wrong. If anything, we are seeing more “lubrication” in the market, as sellers realise they’d be foolish to hang on for an overly ambitious sale price in the run-up to Christmas. This in turn has freed up the market, with more undecided sellers committing to moving, as there now appears to be more choice of properties available for sale. Indeed, Rightmove reports a 16% jump in new properties coming to market in the first week of September.

In support of this increased buoyancy the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors reports a “broadly stable” housing market, once again emphasising the wonderful “Keep Calm and Carry On” mentality of the British!

Asking prices are “behaving”, with the price of newly marketed properties for the last reported month averaging a 0.7% increase. This is broadly in line with the medium-term average for September, although the annual 1.2% is somewhat subdued. Of course, asking prices do not always reflect actual sale prices, which will be a more accurate barometer of the market in the coming months. But the signs are good.

In terms of sales volumes, the prime London market (over £750,000), which can be seen as an indicator of confidence levels overall, is finally improving with a jump of 6% over this time last year, as the previously stretched buyer affordability ratios are now levelling out. Everyone knew London was overheated!

The Land Registry figures show an annual 3.1% increase in UK house prices, the lowest for five years, which can only lead to continued sense and stability in the market.

Interestingly, rents rose in 40% of cases last month, despite the number of tenants registering falling by 19% nationally (source:ARLA) and stock availability rising by 7%. Could this be pointing towards a rent peak in the coming months? Research by Paragon suggests that 21% of landlords expect to sell some of their buy-to-let properties in the next 12 months, versus only 9% who expect to add to their portfolio. Certainly, we are seeing some exceptional yields for our landlord clients, although we always urge them to buy with caution.

Whatever your plans, please regard us as your local experts in property, and call us for advice on 01933 224400 before you make a move. We know what we’re talking about and we offer straight-talking, good advice with a smile, to anyone who’ll listen!

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Relocation Agent Network and Land & New Homes Network Unveils New PX Partnership For House Builders

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Relocation Agent Network and Land & New Homes Network have announced a collaborative referral partnership to support Land & New Homes Network’s part exchange and assisted move offering that will benefit house builders across Britain.

With the assistance of Relocation Agent Network members in areas where Land & New Homes Network doesn’t have member coverage, this new service will link leading independent estate agents, and enable developers to market part exchange and assisted move properties from any region – a move that Land & New Homes Network believe will lead developers to break free from the often costly and unenterprising national corporate agents.

Richard Tucker, Managing Director of the Relocation Agent Network adds: “Having been established since 1994, many house builders will already be familiar with our members and will know the extent of our reach, awareness and performance – our members sell a property every three minutes across approaching 600 member offices. Plus, we have the backing of Cartus, the world’s premier relocation company. We are delighted that Land & New Homes Network has chosen to partner with us and to utilise our referral platform to support their builder clients.

Kevin Ellis, founder of the Land & New Homes Network says: “Until now, house builders had been forced to stick with the national chains to handle their PX properties, but we offer a credible, effective alternative. We are delighted to be working with Relocation Agent Network; this is yet another demonstration of our commitment to offering a cohesive service to the UK’s leading house builders and is part of our Developer Solutions offering, which also includes part exchange, assisted move and Shared Ownership sales.”

The collaboration will enable buyers from any location to move with ease, while offering house builders the flexibility to market their developments with a more agile, effective partner. This new working relationship with Land & New Homes Network will deliver another level of service that will cover any and every eventuality, and give house builders the confidence to strike new profitable new relationships with outstanding independent agents.

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Maximising Your Sale Prospects

maxThe vast array of property-related TV programmes proliferating our screens is certainly an indication of our appetite for home improvement. Presumably this has something to do with pride of ownership and making the most out of “an Englishman’s home is his castle”.

However, once you come to sell, you may understandably be more focused on your next property than the one you are leaving. It is surprising how many properties we see offered for sale where the vendor has not taken advantage of some simple things that can be done to increase their chances of selling whilst maximising their price.

Bear in mind that we are not just selling bricks and mortar, but an aspirational lifestyle, as most people purchase a better property than the one they are leaving.

A recent survey among estate agents identified key aspects of property presentation that they regard as important to get right when selling. 77% said that decluttering the interior was among their top three tips, 68% included a thorough interior clean, 48% highlighted the need to tidy the garden, 40% suggested neutral decoration, 35% recommended a fresh coat of exterior paint, and 24% felt a new kitchen or bathroom was important.

Interestingly, gadgets, technology and security features ranked surprisingly low, with less than 1% of agents citing these as important, presumably as these are things that can easily be added at a later date as required although a fast broadband speed is of course critically important. A survey by Rightmove suggested that homes with slower broadband tended to sell for up to 20% less than those with fast broadband!

It is interesting to note that, apart from the broadband issue, the above figures overwhelmingly point to the need to create a strong first visual impression, and this concurs with our own findings that whilst buyers do not always know precisely what they want, they certainly know it when they see it. Our job is to help them get to that point!

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Why Use High Street Agents?

Richard TuckerThe third post in our blog series Why Use High Street Agents offers property sellers some what else to consider when selecting the right agent.

Richard Tucker, Managing Director of Relocation Agent Network, says:
“In the first two posts of this series, I highlighted some considerations for the marketing strategy and the progression of the sales process. I’d like to conclude this series by looking at what else makes a good agent in our opinion.

“High street presence means you can see how an agent presents properties for sale in their window. What is it about the display that catches your eye? How involved is the agent in the local community? And of course a place to meet with your agent.

“Local knowledge is a must for someone looking to move into a new area. The agent will be able to share key information about the neighbourhood with potential buyers.

“Can-do attitude can provide you with the assurance that your sale is in a safe pair of hands. The agent is realistic and will explain to you the challenges that may occur and the solutions to overcome them; the key point being that you are in the hands of a professional who is proactive and knows how to help their customers make a successful move.

“Client testimonials tell you about the quality of the service and the impressions left on both buyers and sellers. This is not only a financial transaction, but an exchange between real people.

“Face-to-face support brings us back to the people aspect; seeing a familiar face, someone you can trust when you need advice can really help reduce the stress associated with certain elements of selling and buying a property.

“Taking personal ownership of your sale and purchase means the agent is dedicated to finding you the best buyer for your property and the right property to move to. The agent is willing to invest their time and resources to be your advocate and to give you the support you need to make a successful move.

In conclusion
“I hope this series has helped you and wish you a smooth sale!”

Thinking of selling?
Richard James is a selected member of Relocation Agent Network, who has chosen us as ’s Local Expert, based on our customer service and a variety of other criteria. Not only does this prove our credentials as one of the area’s leading estate agents, but through our Network membership, we are able to offer sellers a completely unique channel of buyer that no other estate agent in can provide. Visit to find out more.

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