It is one of the oddest outcomes from the pandemic: a housing market that is so frenetic that there could be nothing to sell within two months.
While Easter is traditionally the start of the house-hunting season, March was the busiest month for a decade. More sales were agreed on March 23 than on any other day in the past ten years, according to the property website Rightmove. A day later, a record 9.1 million people clicked on to the property portal, an average of 6,300 visits every minute.
Across the country, except in London, there is less than two and a half months’ worth of homes left to buy at current rates of sale. In 530 postcode districts, which is almost a fifth of the UK, there is less than two months left, according to TwentyCi, the property data analysts.
“Unless you want to live in parts of London or the Outer Hebrides you have a problem,” says Ian Lancaster, chief executive of TwentyCi. “[It is like] walking into the supermarket and finding the shelves are not fully stocked and, in some cases, practically empty.”
Ben Pridden, a director of Hewetson and Johnson, a North Yorkshire property firm, tells a story about a couple who drove up to Yorkshire last month: “They set off from London in their Porsche Boxster with four houses to view. By the time they arrived, three had sold.”
The story is repeated across the country. “Houses over £1 million that would have taken months if not years to sell are now taking days or a week,” says Jonathan Cunliffe, who runs his own Cornish estate agency. “It has been the best sellers’ market since 2006.”
“The UK housing market is in the middle of a perfect storm,” says Tom Bill, head of UK residential research at Knight Frank. The upmarket estate agency has seen more new buyers registering than at any other time in the past decade………
…..Properties are being traded without ever reaching an estate agent’s window, cash buyers are favoured, almost any “lovely house with a few acres in spitting distance of the capital” will go to sealed bids, and one in ten houses are now sold privately.
In the most desirable areas — in the countryside and on the coast — prices have risen by 8.8 per cent and 6.8 per cent respectively in the first quarter of this year, according to Savills estate agency.
Jamie Jamieson, a buying agent in Norfolk where most of the county has less than two months supply of properties for sale, says: “There is very little to buy. In most cases you’re not allowed to view a property unless you have cash or a mortgage agreed.”
Increasingly there are tales that it is the sellers not the buyers who are scuppering deals as they look to cash in on rapidly rising prices. Carol Peett, a buying agent in west Wales http://www.westwalespropertyfinders.co.uk, tells of a client who had an offer accepted £75,000 over the £700,000 asking price but was told on the day they were due to exchange that the seller wanted £100,000 more…..
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/how-the-covid-19-pandemic-sent-the-housing-market-into-a-frenzy-7985lrvnl – The Times Saturday, 3rd April 2021
If you are looking for a property in Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire or Ceredigion, give West Wales Property Finders a call on 01834 862816. We can find your perfect property for you – circa 90% of the properties we find for our clients are off market – whist saving you time, stress and often money too.