Winter is naturally a slower time for property sales, as people tend to focus on the traditional holiday and festive period rather than on property matters. The close proximity to the New Year means buyers are more likely to wait and see how the market stands after the holidays.
It is also usual to see a drop in the number of properties being put up for sale at this time of the year, as people know it is unlikely a deal can be done in such a small space of time. This winter property availability is at a historical low with an average of just sixty properties per estate agent in the UK. According to Rightmove, the current level is the lowest ever recorded. This shows just how limited the selection is.
Sellers looking to make a fast winter sale are traditionally forced to reduce prices slightly in the hope of attracting a late sale before the year ends. This year the price reduction was the smallest for the last five years, seeing a 1.7% drop in prices on average across the UK. The small price fall and limited number of properties available has had a cooling affect on sales.
London is one of the only areas in the UK that is bucking the trend. Prices in the capital are reported to be up by 0.8% even though sales still remain slow. Like with most things property related, London appears to set its own rules, even at times of the year when people are expected to put business to one side.
With the end of the year approaching, people are considering what will happen in the future in the property sector. The drop in house prices signifies the end of the recent price boom and experts are trying to decide if it is simply a temporary cooling or a precursor for softening in the medium term. 2015 could signify new growth or further reductions in prices but it is a matter of conjecture which will happen.
If you are thinking of buying or selling your property this winter, we will do all we can to help you make a fast and hassle free sale and we handle all aspects of property buying, selling and estate management in Islington and throughout the rest of London.