Will Clark, Director of online estate agent SellMyHome.co.uk, looks at the double-edged sword that is the property market boom.
It’s no secret that the ratio of buyers and sellers is shifting – you can’t look at a newspaper without seeing headlines of sales shortages, housing crises and the consequential house pricing boom that it’s brought about. It’s creating a huge change in how we live. Fewer people are able to get onto the property ladder meaning that we’ve seen a rise in the number of people who are having to rent instead of buying their own homes.
The amount of available properties is running thin on the ground, but that doesn’t mean less people are looking to move house. In fact, information from the Royal Institution of the Chartered Surveyors show that the number of potential new buyers has reached a high, and with campaigns like ‘Improve Don’t Move’, which encourages people to redecorate or add extensions to their current houses rather than look for somewhere new, this inevitable trend doesn’t look like it will be changing anytime soon. The properties just aren’t there to buy.
With the supply being dwarfed by the demand in houses it means that, inevitably, property prices are being pushed higher and higher. The numbers of buyers per property goes up and up. The result; a mad scramble between buyers to put the most cash on the table in the hope that the vendor accepts their offer before someone else comes along. In London especially there is a rule-of-thumb rapidly becoming an understanding that you cannot offer less than asking, sellers know that, providing their asking price is in keeping with other properties in the area, they have the option to say ‘no’, knowing full well that a better offer will come their way shortly. Time was that putting an offer on a property was a game of poker; who would call whose bluff first? Not so anymore, now the seller has stacked the deck and holds all aces knowing that if one buyer folds another one will be along shortly going “all in”.
So, with demand at an all-time high for property and supply at a low, now is the perfect time to put your property on the market as there are so many people lining up to find their new homes. Of course this property boom is a double-edged sword. Sure, you can sell your property and rake in the money but if you’re moving within the same area you’re selling or are looking to upgrade you need to perform a balancing act. The income you gain from the sale of your property needs to be utilised just right in order to find you the next step in the evolution of your moving life.
The moral of the story: assess your property value and ask what you want to do with it. As a seller you’re in a position of power at the moment, but as a popular superhero likes to say “With great power comes great responsibility”.