A positive outlook for the housing market for 2021
- Credit: Dales & Peaks
Life may be hard for many people at the moment, but the property market is moving well and the outlook for 2021 is bright, says Tom Currey, sales director of Dales & Peaks.
The estate agent, which covers north Derbyshire, is looking forward to a strong 2021 and expects clear trends in certain sectors of the market.
Q: What effect will this third lockdown have on the property market?
I am an optimist and we have the same number of valuations booked in for January as we had in the middle of summer. The current situation doesn’t seem to be slowing people down here when it comes to buying and selling houses. I did expect we might have a quiet few weeks in early 2021 but that doesn’t seem to be the case. I think there are some people who are trying to move before the stamp duty holiday ends and there are others who expect it to be extended. There are always some people who wait until spring, when the weather improves but, then again, for us, January is always quite a steady month anyway.
Q: Will some buyers and sellers wait until after the lockdown?
Quite possibly, especially the older generations perhaps. We didn’t see a huge amount of movement from them last year. Some of those who have been especially cautious throughout the pandemic might wait until the situation improves or they are vaccinated before deciding to embark upon the process. But there will always be some people who have to move – this is one of the reasons our industry is classed as essential. We have a duty to keep people moving and we are able to do so safely, by following all the guidelines and taking the necessary precautions, such as wearing PPE and making sure homes are well ventilated for viewings. Our policy of having a 3D virtual tour for every property also means prospective buyers can really gain a good idea of whether they might be interested before viewing in person.
Q: How do you think 2021 will pan out for the property market?
I think the coming year will be good for the mid to top end of the market, rather than the mid to low end and we will see further price increases.
Many of those moving last year in order to benefit from the stamp duty holiday were the 30 to 40 age group, buying £300,000 to £400,000 properties. Many of the owners of properties worth £700,000 to £900,000 for which I did valuations last year decided to wait until after the stamp duty holiday in the hope that the market might not be so flooded.
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Q: Will we see more new builds homes in 2021?
The Help to Buy scheme is changing this year. It was available on homes of up to £600,000 and any buyer was eligible so long as they were using it to buy their only home and not for part-exchange. From this spring, however, it will only be available to first-time buyers, which is likely to result in developers concentrating more on the lower end of the market. Having said that, we are seeing a strong new-build market here in Derbyshire across the board and will work with even more developers this year than last year. We are working two developers on developments of over 30 houses – one with 150 homes – and then with quite a few who have five to six-house developments. There are quite a lot of two to three-house developments in the pipeline too.
Q: What other trends do you expect to see in the property market?
More lenders are now starting to offer mortgages for first time buyers, with better percentages again. They have brought 10 per cent deposit mortgages back and that usually feeds the market from the bottom. Hopefully that trend will keep going throughout the year, but it is very early to say. I do think this trend of people moving out of cities into the country will continue. We are also seeing people who are upsizing with the specific aim of being able to work from home permanently. And it is true that very often by moving out of the city into the country, you tend to get more space for your money.
For more information visit www.dalesandpeaks.co.uk