Avoiding the Feeble
David Edwards at John Smale & Co finds that there is not only life in the property market this spring, but also some wonderful opportunities.
Some of us remember the last time the property market had few cash buyers, not many buy-to-let investors and relatively few second and holiday home purchasers. It was in the 1970s and 80s.
It seems now that we have come full circle as, once again, first time buyers with mortgages are making up the bulk of the entry level, whilst the higher, discretionary end has been affected by Brexit concerns, increased taxes and a stagnated market, especially in London and parts of the South East.
This is a market that experienced estate agents, who have been round the block a few times, understand and will work with to great effect. To get the most from market conditions like these agents need a special understanding of buyers and a keen local knowledge built up over many years of negotiating deals for their clients.
This is not a time for inexperienced order-takers whose only selling point seems to be to cut their fees to commercially harmful levels. This may seem appealing to sellers, but cheap doesn't go very far. Good goes much further - like getting the top price for your home and driving the sale through in time to fit in with your plans for the future. In property it is best not to know "the price of everything and the value of nothing", as Oscar Wilde quipped.
As we emerge from what seems to be the bottom of this latest property cycle, and are buoyed up by the highest employment figures for fifty years, watch out for the opportunities that a resurgent market can bring. What a great time this is for finding that holiday home you have always promised yourself. And, of course, these are near perfect market conditions for those who have saved hard for a deposit on their first home.
If you are selling now, when availability of stock is low, please choose your estate agent wisely. It is such an important choice. Inexperienced agents offering low fees might be too feeble for this market. Avoid feeble agents like the plague and make sure you chose a strong firm with the people, experience and track record to achieve the best sale for you.