|Local Property Sales Slow Down As People Stay Put|
Figures show sales in Chiswick lowest for any quarter since 2009
The number of properties sold in Chiswick is the lowest for any quarter since April-June 2009 at the height of the financial crisis according to the latest figures. One local estate agent said he was "shocked" at the figures as he expected them to be worse. He warned that prices might begin to turn downwards unless supply begins to improve.
Figures from the Land Registry for the first quarter of 2013 show that prices have decreased - down by 5.9% in the first quarter of 2013 compared with the previous three months. However, average prices are still up by 6.6% compared with the same period last year.
The principal problem in the Chiswick area appears to be a shortage of houses coming onto the market, in what is already a very competitive area with so many estate agents chasing sales.
The volumes for property are down by nearly 25% compared to the same period in 2012. The number of properties sold is the lowest for any quarter since April-June 2009 at the height of the financial crisis.
Asked to comment on why the number of sales are falling, Christian Harper of Oliver Finn www.oliverfinn.com said; "I am shocked by the results, I expected the results to show a much larger fall in factual sales. I believe that with a level of uncertainty in the air, W4 home owners have decided to stay in their current homes and are building loft extensions, side returns and garden offices. I have never seen so many skips outside houses in W4 as I am currently seeing. I believe that this is caused by a combination of events;
1) Mortgage criteria is tightening up, so a good majority of owners wouldn't even qualify for their existing mortgages let alone larger ones despite being able to afford larger payments at current interest rates.
2) Moving costs - stamp duty has increased at some levels and the majority of estate agents charges have also increased as values increase rather than increasing as they provide further services.
3) Total lack of supply, which is self perpetuating. I often hear; 'I will sell mine in a week but I can't find anything'. If everyone said the same, nothing would come to the market.
4) Building costs have not really increased in the past 5 years due to a huge increase of competition thus making it truly affordable to improve your existing home without the need to move.
"As I have previously reported prices have risen by at least 10% in estate agency terms this year due to lack of supply and increased demand from 'out of area' buyers. I hope that this demand will last but fear that prices will begin to turn unless a steady stream of instructions begin to materialise across all agents currently serving W4. "
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
May 11, 2013