Hamptons International Battersea & Wandsworth market update – 7th December 2015

Hamptons International Battersea

 

Good afternoon everyone,

For those of you who are new to these reports I add all my current vendors, past valuations and current buyers to a list of recipients for a regular (once or twice a month) update of what’s really happening in the market.  There’s no sales patter and no pushiness, it’s just an honest and open take on the market as we see it.  As ever, if you want to be taken off the list please just ask.

In terms of property news, the market remains remarkably busy.  It’s been an interesting year with activity when we would expect calm, and quiet when we would normally be rushed off our feet.  Mostly we have put this down to the election which, rather unhelpfully, wiped out much of the spring market.  September was again unusually quiet but since then we have seen a steady flow of instructions and sales.  Stock has also become more balanced although as you can see from the table below, the time taken between going on the market to being under offer in most sectors getting even longer at nearly three months.  Although some of this would be seasonal, it does feel to be on the high side.

.

Type of property

No. available

Average time
before sale agreed
(NOT exchanged)

Average £/sqft

No. available
last month

Average time
last month

Average £/sqft
last month

1 bed flat

5

87 days

£954

16

77 days

£1,006

2 bed flat

20

84 days

£930

26

126 days

£947

3 bed flat

4

125 days

£794

8

70 days

£745

House

28

94 days

£836

34

72 days

£834

.

The big news in November was the Autumn statement which added an extra 3% stamp duty to anyon buying a second home or buy to let property from next April.  This comes on top of the reduction in mortgage interest tax relief to landlords already announced in the summer budget (I have attached the latest Hamptons Autumn Statement briefing research).  This all seems rather at odds with the new pension rules that allow people to take cash from their pensions, as a large proportion of those people were no doubt hoping to put the money into residential property investments.  Whilst George Osbourne is clearly concerned about younger people getting on the property ladder (fifteen years ago around 60% of people under 35 owned their own home, however next year it’s expected to be just half of that), it will be interesting to see how it all works out.  I can’t help but wondering however whether a reduction in the number of landlords coming to the market will simply lead to fewer properties to rent which will in turn force rents to rise even further – not exactly what was originally planned I’m sure.

One of the great advantages of working for a big company like Hamptons is the access this gives us to different markets, both in London and further afield.  We work closely with our country offices and with so many house sellers moving to the country we are trying even harder to bring town and country offices even closer together.  I’m therefore delighted to announce that we have created a number of ‘country practitioners’ who will be able to liaise with London sellers and advise them on all manner of things related to a country move.  In addition to the annual Country Roadshow we hold in March, one of the country practitioners will be working from our Northcote Road office for a day a month from January onwards.  Whether you’re well down the line in your country move or just thinking about it at some point in the future, do let me know if you would like me to set up a meeting.

As Chairman of the Northcote Road business Network I help to organise a number of events in the area such as the summer fete, the Northcote Road Christmas trees, the Christmas lights switch on and the Winter market.  As part of Hamptons’ collaboration with Twentieth Century Fox we were fortunate enough to have Snoopy & Charlie Brown switch on the lights last weekend and it turned out to be a great evening.  This event has certainly become part of the SW11 diary and as usual Hamptons hosted Santa’s grotto.  It was as mad as ever, with queues running down the road past Dolphin School from 3.30pm.  By 7pm Santa had seen around 500 children and we raised over £350 for Cancer Research.

As we head towards the end of the year we enter the awards season, the most prestigious of which are The Sunday Times Estate Agency of the Year Awards.  I’m therefore thrilled to say that we won the gold award for ‘Best Large Estate Agency’ for the fourth year in a row (on top of the unprecedented third year in a row last year).  The judges commented that we offer ‘unrivalled customer service from committed and inspired people’ and that ‘clients using Hamptons will receive expert advice from highly trained, professional and enthusiastic staff’.  They reported that ‘the valuers and negotiators are switched on, and are increasingly proactive in terms of progressing the sales efficiently and in a considerate manner’.  I would have to say that this very much mirrors my own approach in the office, and for the second year running I’m proud to announce that for the second year running I was runner up in the ‘best manager’ category – not bad out of over 600 entries and hopefully third time lucky next year!!

On a more local level the Northcote Road office entered the Wandsworth Business Awards in the category ‘Commitment to Community’ and were delighted to come third, having been highly commended by the judges for all of the support we give to the Northcote Business Network, the NCT and our long standing relationship with Honeywell School.

Finally, don’t be late to the party!!  At the end of last year and the beginning of this property websites were visited 60 million times between boxing day and the second week in January.  To take advantage of one of the biggest surges of activity of the year you need to start thinking about selling your property now, not joining the queue at the start of January.  To encourage sellers to think ahead, we are making a special offer to anyone who instructs us to sell their home in the next week – instruct us by Saturday 12th December to receive premium listings and enhanced visibility for free on Rightmove, Zoopla and Primelocation.  In another first, our lines will be open from Boxing Day onwards to take all property enquiries.

And that’s it for today.  As ever I hope you find these updates interesting and do get in touch if you want to be taken off the list or alternatively wish to discuss anything property related – I’ll always find time for a chat, either in the office or over the phone.  As ever, this update, as well as all of my previous missives is available to view on my blog, which also links to our Twitter feed and can be seen here: hamptonsbattersea.co.uk

Do feel free to subscribe and forward the site address to anyone you know who might be interested.  If you have any feedback please also get in touch.

If you’re considering selling or just want to discuss the market further then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Kind regards

Jonathan

Jonathan Dyson
Area Sales Director
Battersea & Wandsworth
Hamptons International

020 7924 2170

battersea@hamptons-int.com

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