Will Predicated Property Crash Affect Chiswick?

We speak to local agents after economists claim market fall is on its way

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"House prices are likely to fall in the next two years, wiping thousands off prices, while a full-blown bust is possible", claim economists.

They believe the impact of higher interest rates and the global credit crunch will fuel a property market squeeze but do Chiswick's estate agents agree?

Caroline Nichols, Manager of Chiswick's Faron Sutaria, said "The facts are that whilst there are probably fewer purchasers registering than earlier in the year, they are very committed and are seriously looking to purchase now. This is partly a seasonal norm in any case. If asking prices are too ambitious purchasers will watch and wait rather than make offers. This does not necessarily mean that prices are falling, and we still see competition to buy certain types of property-in particular family houses. there is still plenty of activity."

Christian Harper of Oliver Finn told ChiswickW4.com "We have certainly seen a slow down in activity over the past six weeks - Is it fair to say that the market has fallen, or is falling?

"In my many years of experience I believe that the September through to December market is more susceptible to swings of confidence than the rock solid Spring market. 'Bad news in the summer leads to a slow starting Autumn' This year has been especially unusual as we have had such a bad summer weather wise which led to more people getting to August and saying we must go away for some sunshine.

"This trend caused the market to come to a complete standstill until mid September. I was expecting to rebuild buyers energy to purchase on their return. During their holidays we all received news of property crashes in America, mortgage rate increases, potential general elections, job cuts and the icing on the cake was the uncertainty in the mortgage arena.

"All of these points potentially offered reasons not to buy. One by one each of these points has been answered and thus confidence is returning and the serious buyers are back on the streets with cheque books in hand!

"Yes some sellers have adjusted prices. These changes have been more to stimulate activity and make buyers sit up in their chairs rather than demonstrating a general downturn in pricing. Lets not forget that Chiswick is a highly desirable area with a shortage of available housing and people do need somewhere to live and love the prospect of living here in W4. I don’t think we are bullet proof, but not too far from it on a national perspective."

Tim Dalby-Quenet, Manager at Bushells commented "It is true that we are seeing some price re-alignment , with many asking prices slipping back to where they were several months ago.

"There are still plenty of people wanting to buy, but they are being more cautious about how much they offer and seem more prepared to wait for the right property at the right price to come along. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, in fact, it's quite a healthy phenomena to see, as it helps to restore the natural equilibrium between the number of buyers and sellers.

"We are expecting prices to continue to rise next year, but for now, people are fairly accepting of the situation and buying more within their means than of recent times".


October 15, 2007