|Estate Agents Report Bull Market for Chiswick Property|
After sluggish start to the year activity has picked up sharply
Estate agents in Chiswick are saying that turnover in the local residential property market has picked up sharply in recent months with one describing conditions as a bull market.
The latest figures from the Land Registry show that the year started slowly and only 46 sales have been reported by the Land Registry so far this year. Agents agree that the second lockdown at the end of the year and confusion over the extension of the Stamp Duty holiday discouraged buyers and sellers.
However, it is understood that Covid related working restrictions have resulted in deed documents being processed more slowly so the final number for transactions is likely to be revised up substantially if still only to a level which is low by historic standards.
The loosening of restrictions and the extension of the Stamp Duty bonus has brought about levels of activity which agents describe as being similar to the boom days seen at the peak of the market.
Christian Harper of Harpers of Chiswick said, “I am delighted to report that activity in Q2 has been electric so far, with activity at an all-time high from my perspective. I haven’t seen so much demand in my thirty years of business. I expect to see at-least a 300% improvement in factual sales compared to Q1, especially considering the end of the stamp duty holiday on 30th June will fall into Q2.
“My general observation for 2021 is how some well-known local estate agents appear to be concentrating on revenue rather than the job that we are all paid to do, get the best price for our clients. Despite being in a bull market I constantly come across agents valuing low whilst selling the idea of generating more interest and getting over asking price. Essentially allowing buyers to think they have a chance and then disappointing most of them. Whilst this works for some, it certainly doesn't work for all and often leads to re-negotiations during the sales process or selling at under market value. I prefer to ask the ‘best outcome’ price and then look to achieve it rather than play games with frustrated buyers.”
The view of a stronger market was confirmed by Paul Cooney of Horton and Garton who says, ““The figures we’re now seeing are the result of a sluggish end to 2020 with the second lockdown impacting buyer and seller behaviour and the end of the year traditionally being a slower time for the property market. The knock-on effect of a slower end to last year is seen in the low transaction levels throughout the first three months of 2021.
Another local agent who preferred not to be named sounded a note of caution saying, “Things are undoubtedly brisk at the moment but we risk hitting an air pocket when the Stamp Duty extension expires. For Chiswick property this could be a double whammy as the government will need to increase its tax take and hitting owners of high priced properties will go down in the ‘Red Wall’ seats it needs to win to retain power. ”
According to the Land Registry, the average price of a property in the W4 postcode area sold so far this year is £951,237 which is down by 11.2% from the end of 2020 and 6.5% over the last year. With so few sales recorded it is difficult to say with certainty that this represents a true picture of the state of the market although there does appear to have been some softening of prices in the first three months of 2021.
The highest price paid so far this year was £2,500,000 for a semi-detached house on Ennismore Avenue following by £2,400,000 for a terraced property in Berkeley’s Palladian Gardens development near Hogarth Roundabout.
Roughly speaking the post code sector areas are as follows:
1 - Bedford Park and the north side of the High Road
2 - The south side of the eastern end of the High Rd down to the river at Corney Reach
3 - The Grove Park area and over to Strand on the Green
4 - The west of Chiswick between the A4 and Chiswick High Rd - (a high concentration of flats)
5 - The north west of Chiswick - Acton Green mainly
Commenting on the figures, Robert Gardner, Nationwide's Chief Economist, said, “Annual house price growth accelerated to 7.1% in April, only slightly below the peak of 7.3% recorded in December and up from 5.7% in March. In month-on-month terms, house prices rose by 2.1% in April, after taking account of seasonal effects, the biggest month rise since February 2004.
“Just as expectations of the end of the stamp duty holiday led to a slowdown in house price growth in March, so the extension of the stamp duty holiday in the Budget prompted
“However, our research suggests that while the stamp duty holiday is impacting the timing of housing transactions, for most people it is not the key motivating factor prompting them to move in the first place. For example, amongst homeowners surveyed at the end of April
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