I have come across some interesting data that could show the start of the effects of increased mortgage rates and general cost of living as the economy continues to splutter along and that’s an increase in the number of sellers looking for a quick sale.
This data comes from the House Buyer Bureau and shows that there are almost 2,000 homes listed for sale across the country where the seller specifically states they’re looking to sell quickly.
As a comparison to June 2022, this demonstrated a 12% increase in quick sale stock! Looking at the regions with the largest increases, we see that the South West (59.8%) and the West Midlands (58.3%) – that’s an increase of nearly 60% compared to the average of 12%!
Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find the specific data for the South East / Medway areas, but this change really is quite significant and I don’t doubt that if it has not started to impact the market, it will do soon.
This particularly when you look back at the data from the past few years, where in June 2022 the average quick sale home was listed for -8.8% less than the average asking price across the rest of the market and this has now risen to -11.1%.
Looking at our neighbour, London, we see how it’s home to the largest asking price reduction at -19.5%. London has the highest property prices in general, so it’s probably no surprise but nearly 20% is massive!
So… how does this situation come about?
Well, as mentioned above there is some degree of people simply not being able to afford the mortgages they previously could, however, we may also be seeing signs of people who are looking to move choosing to do so before prices drop further.
In my article predicting the market for 2023, I outlined how prices could drop by around 9% and this prediction is starting to come to fruition.
Certainly, however, prices are extremely likely to remain significantly higher than pre-pandemic levels. For example, in January 2019 the average UK house price was £228,314 and as of November 2022 according to the Land Registry, prices had reached £294,910 (that’s an increase of nearly 30%!).
Check out this graph below that tracks the increase in average house prices from 2007 – 2022. It’s great news for investors, but really is eye-watering and I do sometimes wonder where the glass ceiling will be!
The question I often get asked is what all this means for property investors. I completely agree that it’s a challenging market for homeowners and first-time buyers, but whilst conditions are certainly challenging there will be opportunities for investors.
These opportunities are likely to be an increase in below-market value houses, quick sale properties, and generally a flip from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market where asking price reductions with an attractive buying situation will become all the more commonplace.
Do you have plans to expand your portfolio this year? Whether you do or don’t, I’d be keen to hear how the economic climate has impacted your investment plans!