31% more homes for sale in Bexhill than a year ago


One of the key factors of the health of the Bexhill property market is the number of properties for sale at any one time.

The issue with housing is that when demand goes up, unlike with a chocolate bar factory, that can add a couple of hours overtime to increase its supply/production to satisfy demand, it takes a good 18 months to two years from planning permission to someone moving into a new home.

I have talked at length (and proved) in previous articles that we are still not building enough homes in the long term in the Bexhill area. Yet for the short term, a good indicator is the number of properties for sale and how long they have been on the market.

How long a property has been on the market is important as a guide to how the property market is performing – potential buyers can always find this information on the Rightmove and Zoopla listings (if you don’t know where – drop me an email or message and I can let you know).

So, let’s have a look at what is happening in Bexhill, both in terms of the number of properties for sale and how long they have been on the market compared to a year ago, then discuss what that means for the current state of play of the Bexhill property market.

So, to start, let’s look at the number of properties for sale in Bexhill compared to a year ago.

Interestingly, you can see there has been a proportional increase of 89% in terraced properties on the market in Bexhill, yet only a 3% increase in apartments. Overall in the last year there are 31% more properties on the market in Bexhill, compared to a year ago. Now, let’s look how long they have been on the market ..

Interesting to see that the biggest jump in the number of days on the market is terraced houses, from 62 days to 86 days … demand and supply working again. Also, the length of time an average Bexhill property has been on the market has increased by 10% in the last year.

So, what does this all mean for Bexhill Buy To let landlords and Bexhill homeowners looking to buy and sell? Well, if you are thinking of selling, as the number of properties on the market has increased and the length of time Bexhill properties are on the market has also increased – you have to be mindful that realistic pricing is the key to get the property sold. If you are a buyer, that means you find yourself in a better position to negotiate a good deal on your Bexhill property purchase.

There is an argument to suggest that property buyers see excessive days on the market as an indication that the seller is becoming desperate to sell because the property hasn’t sold. Buyers are also mindful to believe that there might be something wrong with the home, a defect that caused other buyers to pass it up. This can concern them when they view the property – if they view it at all, as that possible and perhaps made-up defect is on their minds, even if it is sub-consciously.

Normally, both assumptions are wrong. A property can loiter on the market for several reasons. The most common reason for a property sticking on the market is overvaluing or overpricing. In an effort to get the property on the market, some estate agents may have convinced the seller into believing the property was worth more than the property market will bear.

Don’t get me wrong, if you don’t ask, you don’t get and homeowners naturally want to get the best price for their home, and so test the market. Yet, if you aren’t getting a steady stream of viewers after a few weeks, then that testing can backfire. You see, by setting the asking price too high to see if they can find someone to pay that inflated price, then finding there is nobody in the market that will pay the price, here lies the biggest trap for house sellers on keeping the inflated asking prices for too long.

Sellers can also get stuck on an asking price and they are willing to wait out the market until it catches up to what they want for their property – yet we aren’t in that type of property market now. Consumer champion “Which” said that if you have to reduce your asking price by 5% or more, it adds an extra 64 days to the sales process meaning you might lose the property of your dreams.

Also, I have seen countless times, house sellers insist on an inflated asking price, reduce 12 weeks later, yet buyers think there is something wrong with it so the homeowner gets fed up and accepts a lower offer to get the property sold, whereas if the house seller had gone onto the market at the right asking price, they would get much nearer to what they deserve for their property.

So, if you are looking for a bargain to buy – all the Portals (Rightmove, Zoopla and On the Market) allow you to search and sort by the length of time on the market as well as the asking price. Who knows – there could be a bargain waiting for you!

If you would like to discuss the worth of your property and how my team can help you, call us on 01424 224242. For more articles go online to www.bexhillpropertyblog.com. Kind regards Patrick Stappleton.

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Unemployment – the Secret Driver of the Bexhill Property Market?

If you have been reading my articles on the Bexhill property market recently, you will see that in the three years since the referendum of the ‘B’ word (that word is banned in our household), we have proved beyond doubt that it (whose name shall remain nameless) has had no effect on the Bexhill property market (or the UK as a whole).

So, one might ask, what does affect the property market locally? Well many things on the demand side include wages, job security, interest rates, availability of mortgages, confidence in the economy, inflation, speculative demand … the list goes on. Yet as my blog readers will note, I like to delve deeper into the numbers and I have found an interesting correlation between unemployment and the number of properties sold (i.e. transactions).

Why transaction levels and not house prices? Well just looking at Bexhill house prices as a bellwether has flaws. Many property market commentators and economists believe transaction numbers (the number of properties sold) give a more accurate and candid indicator of the health of the property market than just house values alone.

The reason is twofold. First most people when they sell also buy, so if property values have dropped by 10% or risen by 10% on the one you are selling, it would have done the same on the one you are buying – meaning to judge the health of a property market is very one dimensional. Secondly, the act of moving is very much a human thing. Property habitually conveys a robust emotional connection with homeowners – a connection that few would attribute to their other investments like their savings or stock market investments.

Moving home could be described as a human enterprise, moving from one chapter of one’s life to another. When people move home, it shows they are moving forward in their lives and so this gives a great indicator of the health of the property market.

Looking at Rother’s figures on the graph, you can see an inverse relationship between unemployment and housing transaction levels.

Property transactions in Bexhill dropped by 44.81%, whilst unemployment in Bexhill rose by 28.81% during the 2007 to 2009 Global Financial Crash.  There is clearly a relationship between conditions in the Bexhill job market and the number of people who move home … interesting don’t you think?

Now I am not saying unemployment is the only factor influencing the Bexhill property – but it must be said there is a link.

As a country (and indeed here in Bexhill) over the last 40 years, we have seen a shift in the outlook over the purpose of housing and the development of the religion of following house prices (and I appreciate the irony of me writing these articles on Bexhill – feeding that habit!) Yet, when did owning a home turn from buying a roof over your head to an out and out investment vehicle?

I do wish people would stop fretting about their intrinsic value being associated with their Bexhill home. Now of course, I am not dismissing the current levels of Bexhill house prices – we just must take into consideration other metrics alongside them when judging the health of the property market locally.

One final thought, looking on a broader scale in the UK, those towns and cities whose property markets bounced back after the Global Financial Crash had high levels of employment and low unemployment whilst places with high unemployment and relatively low employment have, on the other hand, typically underperformed.

So, the next time you are considering a house move or buying a buy to let property in Bexhill … don’t make your judgement on house price growth alone.

Now if you would like to discuss this topic in more details give me a call on 01424 224242 or send me an email on patrick@redwell-estates.co.uk. Hope you enjoyed reading it.  Best wishes Patrick Stappleton Author of the Bexhill Property Blog.com
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Statistics taken from.
Unemployment stats – ONS.

Property Sales – Land Registry

 

 

 

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