While 2020 introduced us to something we could only believe in a movie and now cannot bear to hear more about; COVID. The year the whole world stood still!
The year 2021 was full of uncertainty for the property market, yet it was not as dramatic as it had been in previous years. Everyone anticipated the worst, which is one reason why the Stamp Duty holiday was announced.
Real estate agents at Mistoria Estate Agents were unable to find properties fast enough due to the high demand. All properties we put on the market were sold above the asking price by around 17%. These prices were driven by demand from first-time home buyers. However, we observed that investors paid greater than anticipated prices in order to seal a transaction.
As we neared the Christmas season, the one thing that held us up was having to wait for more stock. Even special celebrations were unable to deter our tireless investor or determined first-time buyer, as we continued to receive calls and solicitations for homes.
We are now in 2022, and the most popular subject is how the costs of utilities are increasing to the point that they are affecting whether first-time buyers can afford to buy their dream home.
We understand that property prices have increased at a greater rate than salaries throughout the years, making housing increasingly inaccessible for most people, and interest rates have gone up, increasing the cost of mortgages. This reduces demand for real estate and has an impact on the entire market.
We believe that house prices will not rise at the same rate as they have in recent years. However, some experts believe that prices might decrease by up to 2% over the next year, according to Russell Galley, Halifax’s Managing Director.
According to Rightmove, property prices are 7.6% higher than they were in January 2021. Galley’s hypothesis might prove to be incorrect as the year progresses, given the current deficit in housing and continuing high demand.
I believe the housing market has been a true phenomenon that has defied all odds. Is the rise in utility costs be the next epidemic keeping first-time buyers away? Or will it simply delay their purchasing decisions out even further? It remains to be seen whether altering buying habits and budgets can potentially influence the market over time.