10th Jan, 2018
2017 has undoubtedly been a tough year for the housing market, largely due to the uncertainty brought by Brexit, which then further fuelled a snap election result. This has led to sellers either holding off on their sale or having to adjust their price expectations to finalise a purchase.
So, is 2018 the year that you have decided to purchase your first home, progress up the property ladder or invest in the housing market? If the answer is yes, then these predictions may be useful to keep in mind when making important decisions…
If you’re thinking of moving to London or buying a home in the city rather than renting, then this year may be the perfect time to do so. 2017 saw the lowest rise in home values in this region, compared to the rest of the UK. In particular, Kensington and Chelsea were the worst hit, with prices dropping by over 8% since December 2016. The housing market in London has the potential to stay at this same rate throughout the coming year, and it is likely prices will remain in favour of the buyer – so why not utilise this opportunity?
Elsewhere in the UK, it’s good news for sellers, as property prices are rising and are due to continue to do so throughout 2018. Last year ended on a positive note – despite the predictions of a market crash, prices had seen an increase of around 4% since 2016, which could suggest a level of stability is returning to the market. Following this, between a 3% and 4% increase in the average UK house price is a realistic expectation for the year ahead, meaning homeowners can benefit from their home improving in value.
Regardless of the recent announcement concerning the rise in interest rates, mortgages are set to remain favourable for the lender, as these increases will remain minimal. The changes to stamp duty tax could accelerate first-time buyers’ decision to purchase a property this year, which will also keep the industry moving forward. Alongside this, Government schemes such as ‘Help to Buy’ should continue to support new purchasers, which will further support 2018 sales activity.
The lack of house availability in the UK is another factor to consider when buying or selling this year. Property buyers ultimately have less choice when it comes to finding a new home, which is something that will keep the market ticking over, and help to stimulate an increase in values.
The ups and downs of 2017 did not falter the market, as it stood remarkably firm with a total of 1,127,450 residential property transactions completed.
It will be a challenging year ahead – with Brexit still unresolved and the lack of available housing – but we think the industry will hold strong and we’ll have another great year!
If you require any property advice, or are looking to purchase or sell your home, contact one of our sales team here.
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