26 Nov How lockdown 2 has affected the housing market
When the Prime Minister announced that we would be going in to a second lockdown throughout November, we were justifiably concerned about how that might affect our business; and more importantly all those people who were midway through their property transactions.
Thankfully, the second lockdown has had a minimal impact on our day-to-day work in getting transactions across the line. While there has been some disruption, we have seen a number of happy families move home during the lock down with Covid-19 compliant safety measures in place.
In line with the government guidance and the new tiered system starting on December 2nd our offices will be open but we are only able to accept visitors by appointment only.
Resilience in the market
The property market as a whole is showing far more resilience to the second national lockdown than it did to the first, which saw the entire housing market, from viewings to home moves, put on hold for seven weeks.
Locally, the major outpouring of people relocating from London in search of more living space and greenery has also continued. Virginia Water and the surrounding areas are within the commuter belt and so is an attractive place to live if you work in London.
In the first week of November the number of valuations of homes being put up for sale across the country was up by nearly 40%, with viewing numbers dropping compared to the week previous. This is largely due to buyers being unaware of the fact that the property market would remain open.
Regarding those transactions which were in progress when the announcement was made, the number of exchanges during the first week of this lock down was 11% higher as the market enjoys a boom in sales thanks to the Stamp Duty Holiday.
While the early days of a second national lockdown in England bore little resemblance to the first, Estate Agents across the country have remained open and the high volume of transactions agreed since the market re-started in May has continued to progress. At the time of writing (26/11/20) the UK is due to come out of the month-long lock down on December 2nd, the slight pause in the market during this time seems to have had minimal negative impact on completing transactions.
In the lead up to the second lock down many of our online portals saw traffic spikes on their platforms, as people look to take advantage of the Stamp Duty Holiday which, at the moment, finishes in March 2021.
When it comes to our lettings department, we have been extremely busy with some properties being very competitively priced in order to attract tenants. In fact, some properties have been listed at a historic low, so if you are in the market for a property to let in Virginia Water, now could be a good time to make your move.
In October more than 105,000 home sales took place, the highest number for an October since 2015. The released of pent up in June when the markets reopened has continued through the year; combined with attractive mortgage rates and the Stamp Duty Holiday the industry has been under enormous strain.
This looks to continue as a late surge to complete before the March deadline will challenge lenders to deal with demand from buyers. Even with high levels of uncertainty regarding employment and the economy it is looking like demand will continue into the first quarter of the new year.
So, with the end of the second lock down in sight and the property market remaining strong, if you are hoping to take advantage of the stamp duty holiday you will need to get in touch as soon as possible.
Get in Touch
If you are thinking of moving to the area, make sure you take a look at our amazing catalogue of properties for sale in Virginia Water and the surrounding areas.
If you’d like to speak to someone about properties to let in Virginia Water, a member of our expert team would be happy to help. You can call us on 01344 843000 or email us. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.