With Halloween now past, is the property market about to give us a fright? Or is competition between buyers in the marketplace going to continue to be terrifyingly strong?
Market Shaped by Competing Priorities for Buyers and Sellers
For some, Christmas may seem a long way away, however in November, the property market traditionally marks the beginning of changing trends in the run up to Christmas.
The festive season is typically shaped by two competing sets of needs and activity levels amongst buyers and sellers.
The first common trend is that the number of properties coming to the market for sale slows-down. This is a result of sellers typically believing that spring is a better time of year to sell and, particularly for sellers with families who are mindful of upcoming school holidays, they simply have other things on their mind.
The second trend is that buyers are desperate to secure their dream home before the turn of the year. With less homes being listed and still a large volume of motivated buyers, this means competition for available properties can become fierce. This means increased interest in the smaller volume of homes on the market, potentially pushing up selling prices, good news for sellers, not so good for buyers.
There is also a particularly Scottish reason to want to secure a home before Christmas. Most solicitor firms in Scotland shut before Christmas and don’t re-open until the first full week of January.
If you are thinking of buying or selling during this time, particularly in areas dominated by estate agents who are also solicitor firms, such as Edinburgh, it can be difficult to arrange property viewings and virtually impossible to submit and negotiate an offer on a property around the Christmas and New Year holiday period.
That means that, for as long as three weeks, nobody can agree a sale or purchase of a property.
Even though the market is likely to be quieter during this time, MOV8 will be open during the festive period, including between Christmas and New Year, our staff will be on hand to assist you with any property buying, selling or legal enquiries you may have.
Market Trends and Statistics
Reviewing market trends and property market data, alongside advice from local property experts, can help give an insight into whether now is a good time to buy or sell.
Property Sales Prices and Volumes Continue to Rise
Registers of Scotland, which logs all residential property transactions in Scotland, recently reported an annual rise of 16.9% in property prices and a 1.7% monthly price change in its August 2021 statistics. The average price of a property in Scotland now stands at £180,832.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the volume of residential sales in July 2021 represented an increase of 184.1% versus June 2020 when the country was in lockdown.
Halifax, one of the UK’s largest mortgage lenders, reported a monthly house price increase of 1.7% in September 2021, with an annual increase of 7.4%. Scotland continues to outperform the UK-wide average, with an annual price increase of 8.3%.
Nationwide, another of the UK’s largest mortgage lenders, reported that house prices had increased by 10%, compared to the previous year, when looking at August’s stats. In Scotland, this figure is 11.6% as Scotland continues to outperform the rest of the UK.
Asking Prices Also Rise
Rightmove, which bases its stats on asking prices rather than selling prices, reported a UK-wide change in prices of only 0.3% versus the previous month of July.
Zoopla on the other hand reported a rise of 1.2% in the 3 months to the end of August, again based on asking prices, with an annual rise of 6.1% across the whole of the UK. Their analysis indicates that the run-in to Christmas will be busier than in years gone by.
Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and Borders Property Market
Looking specifically at East Central Scotland, ESPC reported that average selling prices rose by 4% in the July to September 2021 quarter.
37.6% of properties went to a closing date during this quarter in 2021 compared to 27.8% in 2020, indicating a strong market from a home seller’s perspective.
This of course will be leading to an increasingly challenging marketplace for property buyers who are more likely to be losing-out in these competitive bidding scenarios.
Get in Touch
If you would like to talk to us about buying, selling or your local property market get in touch by emailing [email protected]
Alternatively, request a free home valuation here.