Housing Market Continues Spring Revival

The average asking price of property coming to the market increased by 1.1%, or £4,207, this month to hit £372,324, just £570 short of the record in May 2023, according to new data from Rightmove.

A key factor behind this growth towards a near-record average price is the largest homes, top-of-the-ladder sector, which is seeing its strongest start to the year for price growth since 2014, with the annual rate of price growth is now stood at 1.7%, the highest level for 12 months.

However, the market remains price-sensitive, and operating at different speeds, with prices and activity rising more slowly in the more mortgage dependent first-time buyer and second-stepper sectors.

The number of new sellers coming to the market is up by 12% compared to this time a year ago, and the number of sales being agreed is up by 13% as both seller and buyer activity rebound from last year’s much more subdued Spring.

The biggest growth in activity is taking place in the largest homes, top-of-the-ladder sector, with the number of new sellers up by 18% compared with last year, and the number of sales being agreed up by 20%.

Rightmove says homeowners are springing into action, with Thursday 28 March seeing the highest number of new sellers coming to the market in one day so far in 2024, and the third largest since August 2020.

There appears to be a window of opportunity for those considering a move to act, with a busy summer of sporting events, followed by a likely general election, creating more home-mover distractions than usual, according to Rightmove’s Tim Bannister.

Source : Property Industry Eye

Proudly Supporting Bushey Festival 2024

On behalf of the team at Browns, I am thrilled to announce our partnership as headline sponsors for the esteemed Bushey Festival, marking a significant milestone after a successful inaugural year in business. A sponsorship that not only underscores our dedication to supporting the fabric of Bushey’s cultural landscape, but also signifies our ongoing commitment to fostering meaningful connections within the community.

While the local estate agency landscape is somewhat crowded, Browns stand apart. In fact, we don’t see ourselves as traditional estate agents at all. Due to the broad geographical spread of our listings across Hertfordshire, we have consciously refrained from defining ourselves by a high-street office. However, Bushey occupies a unique corner in our hearts, and as residents ourselves, this choice grants us the authority to allocate resources for local community enrichment and engage in broader global philanthropic endeavours, including our commitment to initiatives like 1% for the Planet.

Together, alongside the dedicated volunteers propelling the festival’s prominence, let’s craft unforgettable moments, embrace diversity, and ignite creativity. Join us as we embark on the next chapter of our journey, one filled with excitement, collaboration, and a collective passion for all things Bushey.


Key Information & List of Events : Bushey Festival Website

Halifax House Price Index Released

The latest Halifax House Price Index released this morning revealed a monthly change of -1% in March. Kate Steere, property expert at personal finance comparison site finder.com gives her thoughts:

“Today’s figures show that the events from last year are still weighing heavily on prospective buyers’ minds. While lenders have cut mortgage rates and wage growth has outstripped inflation, the turmoil from the past 12 months is still casting a dark shadow on demand. The Bank of England’s decision to hold rates has dampened UK house price recovery. Half of experts believe that the Bank will wait until June 2024 before cutting rates, so as a result we’re likely to see only a subdued recovery in house prices over the next couple of months. While it’s too early to say if there’s going to be a traditional post-Easter bounce for family houses, we have noticed flats are performing better than in a long time with an increase in first-time buyer activity, which is crucial for a healthy market.”

“This is mostly down to the generosity of the Bank of Mum and Dad, as this rebound in first-time buyer activity would not have been likely without parental assistance, particularly in London and the southeast.

However, not everyone has help with their deposit, which is why lender innovation, such as the recent launch of the 99 per cent mortgage by Accord, is so crucial in getting the market moving.”

Source: Property Notify

Zoopla Data shows Confidence Returning to Housing Market

Commenting on how the Zoopla House Price Index continues to show confidence returning to the housing market, Daniel Austin, CEO and co-founder at ASK Partners, said: “The property sector is showing signs of recovery and the outlook has considerably improved. Rent values have seen sustained growth, positioning real estate as reasonably valued in comparison to gilts and presenting growth potential. In the realm of commercial real estate, factors like physical condition, location, and age significantly influence a property’s value. Well-maintained properties boasting modern amenities tend to command higher prices, while neglected ones may struggle to attract tenants or investors. In the current market, the emphasis has shifted towards the importance of location and quality over the yield on debt or cost. We anticipate opportunistic acquisitions of prime properties in prime locations.

“A RICS survey uncovered that non-traditional market segments, such as aged care facilities, student housing, data centres and life sciences real estate are yielding the most robust returns. With housing set to be a battleground point in this year’s election and as the sector moves to the top of the agenda for all parties, we hope to see a long-term plan for new homes, including social housing, however, we expect we will see more short term fixes. Stimulus will be welcome but can create unnecessary froth. For voters, a stamp duty holiday or reprieve may be a welcome sign. For developers, eased planning regulations for brownfield sites and conversions will be popular. However, the government will be faced with a challenge – striking a balance between trying to increase housing supply and therefore affordability by supporting developers and private landlords but appealing to voters who do not want to see greenfield development. The planning system remains hotly political and as a result, landlords and developers are unlikely to see much in their favour.

“As a debt provider, we hope to support the best sites in prime locations with well-capitalised sponsors who understand their product. Following this strategy, we aim to bolster developers’ initiatives with the flexible underwriting approach that is necessary for navigating current planning rules and market uncertainty. This will enable us to continue to offer opportunities for the growing number of private individuals opting to invest in property debt.”

Source: Property Notify